Photoluminescence model of sulfur passivated p-InP nanowires
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The effect of ammonium polysulfide solution, (NH₄)₂S(x), on the surface passivation of p-doped InP nanowires (NWs) was investigated by micro-photoluminescence. An improvement in photoluminescence (PL) intensity from individual NWs upon passivation was used to optimize the passivation procedure using different solvents, sulfur concentrations and durations of passivation. The optimized passivation procedure gave an average of 24 times improvement in peak PL intensity. A numerical model is presented to explain the PL improvement upon passivation in terms of a reduction in surface trap density by two orders of magnitude from 10¹² to 10¹⁰ cm⁻², corresponding to a change in surface recombination velocity from 10⁶ to 10⁴ cm s⁻¹. The diameter dependence of the PL intensity is investigated and explained by the model. The PL intensity from passivated nanowires decreased to its initial (pre-passivation) value over a period of seven days in ambient air, indicating that the S passivation was unstable.
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