Review Article : rare-earth monosulfides as durable and efficient cold cathodes

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DOIResolve DOI: http://doi.org/10.1116/1.3653275
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TypeArticle
Journal titleJournal of Vacuum Science Technology B
VolumeB29
Issue6
Pages06F602-106F602-14
AbstractIn their rocksalt structure, rare-earth monosulfides offer a more stable alternative to alkali metals to attain low or negative electron affinity when deposited on various III-V and II-VI semiconductor surfaces. In this article, the authors first describe the successful deposition of lanthanum monosulfide via pulsed laser deposition on Si and MgO substrates. These thin films have been characterized by x-ray diffraction, atomic force microscopy, high resolution transmission electron microscopy, ellipsometry, Raman spectroscopy, ultraviolet photoelectron spectroscopy, and Kelvin probe measurements. For both LaS/Si and LaS/MgO thin films, the effective work function of the submicron thick thin films was determined to be about 1 eV from field emission measurements using the scanning anode field emission microscopy technique. The physical reasons for these highly desirable low work function properties were explained using a patchwork field emission model of the emitting surface. In this model, nanocrystals of low work function materials having a h100i orientation perpendicular to the surface and outcropping it are surrounded by a matrix of amorphous materials with a higher work function. To date, LaS thin films have been used successfully as cold cathode emitters with measured emitted current densities as high as 50 A/cm2. Finally, we describe the successful growth of LaS thin films on InP substrates and, more recently, the production of LaS nanoballs and nanoclusters using pulsed laser ablation.
Publication date
LanguageEnglish
AffiliationNRC Institute for Microstructural Sciences; National Research Council Canada
Peer reviewedYes
NPARC number18867250
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Record identifier5c6e267f-b22d-4f9c-9b0b-55fc308384c5
Record created2011-11-03
Record modified2016-05-09
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