For the successful realization of the next generation of nano-scale devices, the understanding of contact formation needs to be improved. Both the aggressive downscaling of traditional silicon technology, as well as the introduction of high mobility or large bandgap semiconductors (Ge, InGaAs, GaN, SiC), move contact formation into areas of solid state physics which are relatively unexplored. This project aims at a fundamental study of metal/semiconductor contacts at nanoscale dimensions. The goals of the project are threefold: (1) studying the effect of scaling towards ultra-thin films on phase formation, texture development and contact properties, (2) studying contact formation and redistribution of elements on high mobility and wide gap semiconductors, and (3) developing methods for controlling the contact resistance by controlling the interface
dipole. To achieve these goals, the participating research teams contribute unique expertise and infrastructure to the project. Firstly, in situ X-ray diffraction (XRD) and Rutherford backscatterg spectrometry (RBS) will be used to monitor phase formation and texture development while the solid-state reaction is taking place. RBS, medium energy ion scattering (MEIS) and transmission electron microscopy (TEM) will be used to study the
redistribution of elements during contact formation. Finally, the local electrical, compositional and crystallographical properties of the contacts will be studied by ballistic electron emission microscopy (BEEM) and advanced TEM techniques.