Tensile Properties of Si Nanowires with Faulted Stacking Layers

HF Zhan and YT Gu and C Yan and PKDV Yarlagadda, SCIENCE OF ADVANCED MATERIALS, 6, 1489-1492 (2014).

DOI: 10.1166/sam.2014.1800

Semiconductor nanowires (NWs) show tremendous applications in micro /nano-electro-mechanical systems. In order to fulfill their promising applications, an understanding of the mechanical properties of NWs becomes increasingly important. Based on the large-scale molecular dynamics simulations, this work investigated the tensile properties of Si NWs with different faulted stacking layers. Different faulted stacking layers were introduced around the centre of the NW by the insertion or removal of certain stacking layers, inducing twins, intrinsic stacking fault, extrinsic stacking fault, and 9R crystal structure. Stress-strain curves obtained from the tensile deformation tests reveal that the presence of faulted stacking layers has induced a considerable decrease to the yield strength while only a minor decrease to Young's modulus. The brittle fracture phenomenon is observed for all tested NWs. In particular, the formation of a monatomic chain is observed for the perfect NW, which exists for a relatively wide strain range. For the defected NW, the monatomic chain appears and lasts shorter. Additionally, all defected NWs show a fracture area near the two ends, in contrast to the perfect NW whose fracture area is adjacent to the middle. This study provides a better understanding of the mechanical properties of Si NWs with the presence of different faulted stacking layers.

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