Skip to main content

Thank you for visiting nature.com. You are using a browser version with limited support for CSS. To obtain the best experience, we recommend you use a more up to date browser (or turn off compatibility mode in Internet Explorer). In the meantime, to ensure continued support, we are displaying the site without styles and JavaScript.

Surface transfer doping of diamond

Abstract

The electronic properties of many materials can be controlled by introducing appropriate impurities into the bulk crystal lattice in a process known as doping. In this way, diamond (a well-known insulator) can be transformed into a semiconductor1, and recent progress in thin-film diamond synthesis has sparked interest in the potential applications of semiconducting diamond2,3. However, the high dopant activation energies (in excess of 0.36 eV) and the limitation of donor incorporation to (111) growth facets only have hampered the development of diamond-based devices. Here we report a doping mechanism for diamond, using a method that does not require the introduction of foreign atoms into the diamond lattice. Instead, C60 molecules are evaporated onto the hydrogen-terminated diamond surface, where they induce a subsurface hole accumulation and a significant rise in two-dimensional conductivity. Our observations bear a resemblance to the so-called surface conductivity of diamond4,5,6,7,8 seen when hydrogenated diamond surfaces are exposed to air, and support an electrochemical model in which the reduction of hydrated protons in an aqueous surface layer gives rise to a hole accumulation layer6,7. We expect that transfer doping by C60 will open a broad vista of possible semiconductor applications for diamond.

This is a preview of subscription content, access via your institution

Access options

Rent or buy this article

Prices vary by article type

from$1.95

to$39.95

Prices may be subject to local taxes which are calculated during checkout

Figure 1: Conductance of different substrates upon evaporation of C60 in ultrahigh vacuum.
Figure 2: Schematic representation of the surface transfer doping of intrinsic diamond by C60.
Figure 3: Comparison between experiment and simulation of the two-dimensional conductivity of hydrogen-terminated diamond as a function of C60 coverage.
Figure 4: Reduction of the ‘band offset’ Δ (see Fig. 2) between the diamond valence band maximum and the C60 LUMO with increasing C60 coverage.

References

  1. Nebel, C. E. & Ristein, J. (eds) Thin-Film Diamond I Monogr. Ser. Semiconductors and Semimetals Vol. 76, 145–259 (Elsevier, New York, 2003)

  2. Nebel, C. E. & Ristein, J. (eds) Thin-Film Diamond II Monogr. Ser. Semiconductors and Semimetals Vol. 77, 97–338 (Elsevier, New York, 2004)

  3. Isberg, J. et al. High carrier mobility on single-crystal plasma deposited diamond. Science 297, 1670–1672 (2002)

    Article  ADS  CAS  Google Scholar 

  4. Denisenko, A. et al. Hypothesis on the conductivity mechanism in hydrogen terminated diamond. Diamond Relat. Mater. 9, 1138–1142 (2000)

    Article  ADS  CAS  Google Scholar 

  5. Takeuchi, D., Yamanaka, S. & Okushi, H. Schottky junction properties of the high conductivity layer of diamond. Diamond Relat. Mater. 11, 355–358 (2002)

    Article  ADS  CAS  Google Scholar 

  6. Ri, S. G. et al. Formation mechanism of p-type surface conductive layer on deposited diamond films. Jpn. J. Appl. Phys. 34, 5550–5555 (1995)

    Article  ADS  Google Scholar 

  7. Maier, F., Riedel, M., Mantel, B., Ristein, J. & Ley, L. The origin of surface conductivity in diamond. Phys. Rev. Lett. 85, 3472–3475 (2000)

    Article  ADS  CAS  Google Scholar 

  8. Kawarada, H. Hydrogen terminated diamond surfaces and interfaces. Surf. Sci. Rep. 26, 205–259 (1996)

    Article  ADS  CAS  Google Scholar 

  9. Cui, J. B., Ristein, J. & Ley, L. The electron affinity of the bare and hydrogen covered single crystal diamond (111) surface. Phys. Rev. Lett. 81, 429–432 (1998)

    Article  ADS  CAS  Google Scholar 

  10. Maier, F., Ristein, J. & Ley, L. Electron affinity of plasma-hydrogenated and chemically oxidized diamond (100) surfaces. Phys. Rev. B 64, 165411 (2001)

    Article  ADS  Google Scholar 

  11. Yang, S. H., Petiette, C. L., Conceicao, J., Cheshnovsky, O. & Smalley, R. F. UPS of buckminsterfullerene and other large clusters of carbon. Chem. Phys. Lett. 139, 233–238 (1987)

    Article  ADS  CAS  Google Scholar 

  12. Haddon, R. C. et al. C60 thin film transistors. Appl. Phys. Lett. 67, 121–123 (1995)

    Article  ADS  CAS  Google Scholar 

  13. Hayashi, K. et al. Investigation of the effect of hydrogen on electrical and optical properties in chemical vapor deposited homoepitaxial diamond films. J. Appl. Phys. 81, 744–753 (1997)

    Article  ADS  CAS  Google Scholar 

  14. Gunnarson, O. Superconductivity in fullerides. Rev. Mod. Phys. 69, 575–606 (1997)

    Article  ADS  Google Scholar 

  15. Gluche, P., Aleksov, A., Vescan, A., Ebert, W. & Kohn, E. Diamond surface-channel FET structure with 200 V breakdown voltage. IEEE Electr. Dev. Lett. 18, 547549 (1997)

    Article  Google Scholar 

  16. Riedel, M., Ristein, J. & Ley, L. Recovery of surface conductivity of H-terminated diamond after thermal annealing in vacuum. Phys. Rev. B 69, 125338 (2004)

    Article  ADS  Google Scholar 

  17. Bandis, C. & Pate, B. B. Photoelectric emission from negative-electron-affinity diamond (111) surfaces: Exciton breakup versus conduction-band emission. Phys. Rev. B 52, 12056–12071 (1995)

    Article  ADS  CAS  Google Scholar 

  18. Golden, M. S. et al. The electronic structure of fullerenes and fullerene compounds from high energy spectroscopy. J. Phys. Condens. Matter 7, 8219–8247 (1995)

    Article  ADS  CAS  Google Scholar 

Download references

Acknowledgements

We acknowledge A. Hirsch for the gift of C60 and fruitful discussion. Partial financial support by the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft is also gratefully acknowledged.

Author information

Authors and Affiliations

Authors

Corresponding author

Correspondence to J. Ristein.

Ethics declarations

Competing interests

The authors declare that they have no competing financial interests.

Rights and permissions

Reprints and permissions

About this article

Cite this article

Strobel, P., Riedel, M., Ristein, J. et al. Surface transfer doping of diamond. Nature 430, 439–441 (2004). https://doi.org/10.1038/nature02751

Download citation

  • Received:

  • Accepted:

  • Issue Date:

  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.1038/nature02751

This article is cited by

Comments

By submitting a comment you agree to abide by our Terms and Community Guidelines. If you find something abusive or that does not comply with our terms or guidelines please flag it as inappropriate.

Search

Quick links

Nature Briefing

Sign up for the Nature Briefing newsletter — what matters in science, free to your inbox daily.

Get the most important science stories of the day, free in your inbox. Sign up for Nature Briefing