Liquid droplet dynamics and complex morphologies in vapor-liquid-solid nanowire growth

E. J. Schwalbach, Stephen H Davis, Peter W Voorhees*, D. Wheeler, J. A. Warren

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

16 Scopus citations


The morphology of semiconducting nanowires, including kinked and branched wires, must be controlled in order to produce functional devices. Here, we describe some of the experimental and theoretical work involving complex morphologies of Au-catalyzed Si nanowires grown using the vapor-liquid-solid technique. Although there is a broad parameter space to explore, experiments have highlighted the importance of the precursor and impurity partial pressures on kinking behavior. Theoretical and modeling work has indicated that the stability of and transitions in droplet configuration are important for growth direction changes that can lead to complex morphologies. We describe recent phase-field simulations of nanowire growth that address the dynamics of liquid droplets during vapor-liquid-solid growth, as well as the implications of these results for the formation of wires with complex morphology.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2186-2198
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Materials Research
Issue number17
StatePublished - Aug 28 2011


  • fluid
  • nanostructure
  • simulation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Materials Science(all)
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering


Dive into the research topics of 'Liquid droplet dynamics and complex morphologies in vapor-liquid-solid nanowire growth'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this