5 September 2014 Oxidation/reduction reactions at the metal contact-TlBr interface: an x-ray photoelectron spectroscopy study
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TlBr radiation detector operation degrades with time at room temperature and is thought to be due to electromigration of Tl and Br vacancies within the crystal as well as the metal contacts migrating into the TlBr crystal itself due to electrochemical reactions at the metal/TlBr interface. X-ray photoemission spectroscopy (XPS) was used to investigate the metal contact surface/interfacial structure on TlBr devices. Device-grade TlBr was polished and subjected to a 32% HCl etch to remove surface damage prior to Mo or Pt contact deposition. High-resolution photoemission measurements on the Tl 4f, Br 3d, Cl 2p, Mo 3d and Pt 4f core lines were used to evaluate surface chemistry and non-equilibrium interfacial diffusion. Results indicate that anion substitution at the TlBr surface due to the HCl etch forms TlBr1-xClx with consequent formation of a shallow heterojunction. In addition, a reduction of Tl1+ to Tl0 is observed at the metal contacts after device operation in both air and N2 at ambient temperature. Understanding contact/device degradation versus operating environment is useful for improving radiation detector performance.
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A. J. Nelson, A. J. Nelson, E. L. Swanberg, E. L. Swanberg, L. F. Voss, L. F. Voss, R. T. Graff, R. T. Graff, A. M. Conway, A. M. Conway, R. J. Nikolic, R. J. Nikolic, S. A. Payne, S. A. Payne, H. Kim, H. Kim, L. Cirignano, L. Cirignano, K. Shah, K. Shah, "Oxidation/reduction reactions at the metal contact-TlBr interface: an x-ray photoelectron spectroscopy study", Proc. SPIE 9213, Hard X-Ray, Gamma-Ray, and Neutron Detector Physics XVI, 921313 (5 September 2014); doi: 10.1117/12.2062037; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2062037

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