Chemical Interaction-Guided, Metal-Free Growth of Large-Area Hexagonal Boron Nitride on Silicon-Based Substrates

S Behura and P Nguyen and R Debbarma and SW Che and MR Seacrist and V Berry, ACS NANO, 11, 4985-4994 (2017).

DOI: 10.1021/acsnano.7b01666

Hexagonal boron nitride (h-BN) is an ideal platform for interfacing with two-dimensional (2D) nanomaterials to reduce carrier scattering for high-quality 2D electronics. However, scalable, transfer-free growth of hexagonal boron nitride (h-BN) remains a challenge. Currently, h-BN- based 2D heterostructures require exfoliation or chemical transfer of h-BN grown on metals resulting in small areas or significant interfacial impurities. Here, we demonstrate a surface-chemistry-influenced transfer-free growth of large-area, uniform, and smooth h-BN directly on silicon (Si)-based substrates, including Si, silicon nitride (Si3N4), and silicon dioxide (SiO2), via low-pressure chemical vapor deposition. The growth rates increase with substrate electronegativity, Si < Si3N4 < SiO2, consistent with the adsorption rates calculated for the precursor molecules via atomistic molecular dynamics simulations. Under graphene with high grain density, this h-BN film acts as a polymer-free, planar- dielectric interface increasing carrier mobility by 3.5-fold attributed to reduced surface roughness and charged impurities. This single-step, chemical interaction guided, metal-free growth mechanism of h-BN for graphene heterostructures establishes a potential pathway for the design of complex and integrated 2D-heterostructured circuitry.

Return to Publications page