Epitaxial growth of topological insulator Bi2Se3 film on Si(111) with atomically sharp interface

Namrata Bansal, Yong Seung Kim, Eliav Edrey, Matthew Brahlek, Yoichi Horibe, Keiko Iida, Makoto Tanimura, Guo Hong Li, Tian Feng, Hang Dong Lee, Torgny Gustafsson, Eva Andrei, Seongshik Oh

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137 Scopus citations


Atomically sharp epitaxial growth of Bi2Se3 films is achieved on Si(111) substrate with molecular beam epitaxy. Two-step growth process is found to be a key to achieve interfacial-layer-free epitaxial Bi 2Se3 films on Si substrates. With a single-step high temperature growth, second phase clusters are formed at an early stage. On the other hand, with low temperature growth, the film tends to be disordered even in the absence of a second phase. With a low temperature initial growth followed by a high temperature growth, second-phase-free atomically sharp interface is obtained between Bi2Se3 and Si substrate, as verified by reflection high energy electron diffraction (RHEED), transmission electron microscopy (TEM) and X-ray diffraction. The lattice constant of Bi 2Se3 is observed to relax to its bulk value during the first quintuple layer according to RHEED analysis, implying the absence of strain from the substrate. TEM shows a fully epitaxial structure of Bi 2Se3 film down to the first quintuple layer without any second phase or an amorphous layer.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)224-229
Number of pages6
JournalThin Solid Films
Issue number1
StatePublished - Oct 31 2011

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Surfaces and Interfaces
  • Surfaces, Coatings and Films
  • Metals and Alloys
  • Materials Chemistry


  • Bismuth selenide
  • Interface structure
  • Molecular beam epitaxy
  • Reflection high energy electron diffraction
  • Silicon
  • Topological insulators
  • Transmission electron microscopy

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