We have grown epitaxial Rhenium (Re) (0001) films on α-Al 2O3 (0001) substrates using sputter deposition in an ultra high vacuum system. We find that better epitaxy is achieved with DC rather than with RF sputtering. With DC sputtering, epitaxy is obtained with the substrate temperatures above 700 °C and deposition rates below 0.1 nm/s. The epitaxial Re films are typically composed of terraced hexagonal islands with screw dislocations, and island size gets larger with high temperature post-deposition annealing. The growth starts in a three dimensional mode but transforms into two dimensional mode as the film gets thicker. With a thin (∼2 nm) seed layer deposited at room temperature and annealed at a high temperature, the initial three dimensional growth can be suppressed. This results in larger islands when a thick film is grown at 850 °C on the seed layer. We also find that when a room temperature deposited Re film is annealed to higher temperatures, epitaxial features start to show up above ∼600 °C, but the film tends to be disordered.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
- Surfaces and Interfaces
- Surfaces, Coatings and Films
- Metals and Alloys
- Materials Chemistry