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Microscopic observation of lateral diffusion at Si-SiO$$_{2}$$ interface by photoelectron emission microscopy using synchrotron radiation

Hirao, Norie; Baba, Yuji ; Sekiguchi, Tetsuhiro ; Shimoyama, Iwao  ; Honda, Mitsunori*

The lateral surface diffusion at Si-SiO$$_{2}$$ interface has been observed at nanometer scale using photoelectron emission microscopy (PEEM) combined with synchrotron soft X-ray excitation. The samples investigated were Si-SiO$$_{x}$$ micro-patterns prepared by O$$_{2}$$$$^{+}$$ ion implantation in Si(0 0 1) wafer using a mask. The lateral spacial resolution of the PEEM system was about 41 nm. The brightness of each spot in the PEEM images changed depending on the photon energy around the Si ${it K}$-edge, in proportion to the X-ray absorption intensity of the corresponding valence states. It was found that the lateral diffusion occurs at lower temperature than that reported for the longitudinal diffusion at the Si-SiO$$_{2}$$ interface. It was also found that no intermediate valence states such as SiO (Si$$^{2+}$$) exist at the Si-SiO$$_{2}$$ interface during the diffusion. The observed differences between lateral and longitudinal diffusion are interpreted by the sublimated property of silicon monoxide (SiO).

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