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Published December 2002 | public
Journal Article

Quantitative Charge Imaging of Silicon Nanocrystals by Atomic Force Microscopy


Quantitative understanding of charging and discharging of Si nanocrystals in SiO2 films on Si substrate is essential to their application in floating gate nonvolatile memory devices. Charge imaging by atomic force microscopy (AFM) or electrostatic force microscopy (EFM) can provide qualitative information on such system, while a further step is needed. We have developed a generalized method of images, which can solve Poisson equation for multiple dielectric layers, to simulate the charge imaging of Si nanocrystals by non-contact mode AFM under different sample geometries. Simulated images can be compared with experimental images thoroughly to estimate the total amount and distributions of trapped charges, which is also useful in the study of time evolution of charges or dissipation problems.

Additional Information

© 2002 Materials Research Society. The research described in this article was sponsored by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), and by the National Science Foundation.

Additional details

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October 23, 2023