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11 June 2003 Surface morphology evolution at early stages of CaF2(110) epitaxial growth on Si(001)
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The initial stage studies of CaF2 molecular beam epitaxy (MBE) on Si(111) provide a lot of new information important for understanding basic mechanisms of the heteroepitaxy and interface formation between dissimilar materials. Unlike CaF2 on Si(111) system, which has been thoroughly studied by many groups, the interaction of CaF2 molecules with a technologically important Si(001) surface until recently remained almost unexplored except for the TEM and STM studies, where strong anisotropy at the initial stages of CaF2 growth on Si(001) was observed. In our previous work, it was found that a so-called "wetting layer" forms during the initial stage of fluorite growth at above 650°C. This layer influences much the following stages of fluorite growth and determines unusual (110)-orientation of CaF2 nanostructures, grown on Si(001) surface. The wetting layer formation was accompanied by transformation of the initially two-domain (2x1 and 1x2) silicon surface to single-domain. However, microscopic mechanism of this transformation remained unclear. In this work, we used atomic force microscopy to thoroughly investigate the evolution of the silicon substrate surface during the wetting layer formation. We have found the basic microscopic mechanism governing the transition between single- and two-domain surface morphology and revealed more details on nucleation and evolution of CaF2 linear-ridge-like nanostructures described in our previous work as appearing at higher surface coverage.
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Nikolai S. Sokolov, S. M. Suturin, and V. P. Ulin "Surface morphology evolution at early stages of CaF2(110) epitaxial growth on Si(001)", Proc. SPIE 5023, 10th International Symposium on Nanostructures: Physics and Technology, (11 June 2003);

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