The structural change upon annealing of an amorphous GeSbTe (GST) film deposited by molecular beam epitaxy on a Si(111) substrate is studied by means of X-ray diffraction (XRD), X-ray reflectivity (XRR), and atomic force microscopy (AFM). XRD profiles reveal that both metastable cubic and stable hexagonal phases are obtained with a single out-of-plane orientation. XRR study shows a density increase and consequent thickness decrease upon annealing, in accordance with literature. From both, the XRD and the AFM study, it emerges that the crystalline substrate acts as a template for the film, favoring the crystallization of the amorphous GST into the  oriented metastable cubic phase, and the latter turns into the  stable hexagonal phase for higher annealing temperature.
AIP Publishing LLC
7 Aug 2014
Volume: 116 Issue: 5 Pages: 054913
Journal of Applied Physics