Early stages of laser mixing process in Sb/Ge multilayer thin films

R. Serna*, C. N. Afonso, A. K. Petford-Long, N. J. Long

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


The onset of mixing at the interfaces between Sb and Ge in thin multilayered films containing two or four layers has been studied. The films were irradiated with nanosecond laser pulses in order to trigger mixing, and in situ reflectivity measurements were used to follow the transformation in real-time. Cross sectional transmission electron microscopy analysis was used to study both the structure and the composition profile before and after irradiation. A threshold irradiation energy exists for the onset of mixing, below which roughening of the interface between the layers is observed, together with recrystallization of the surface Sb layer following melting. The results are consistent with a melting/diffusion process which is inhomogeneously nucleated at the interface between the top Sb and Ge layers. Once mixing is initiated an amorphous Sb-Ge layer of constant thickness is formed, corresponding to mixing along a well defined planar melt front. Voids are observed at the former Sb/Ge interface, which may be related to interfacial stress in the as-grown configuration.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)132-137
Number of pages6
JournalApplied Physics A Solids and Surfaces
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 1 1993


  • 64.75.+g
  • 78.90.+t
  • 81.40.-z

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Materials Science(all)
  • Engineering(all)
  • Physics and Astronomy (miscellaneous)


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