The surface morphology and electronic properties of as-deposited CVD diamond films and the diamond films which have been subjected to boron ion implantation or hydrogen plasma etching have been systematically studied by high resolution scanning probe microscopy and spectroscopy techniques. AFM and STM image observations have shown that (a) both the as-deposited CVD diamond films and the boron ion implanted films exhibit similar hillock morphologies on (100) crystal faces and these surface features are formed during the deposition process; (b) boron ion implantation does not cause a discernible increase in surface roughness; (c) atomic flatness can be achieved on crystal faces by hydrogen plasma etching of the film surface. Scanning tunnelling spectroscopy analysis has indicated that (a) the as-deposited diamond films and the hydrogen plasma etched diamond films possess typical p-type semiconductor surface electronic properties; (b) the as-deposited diamond films subjected to boron implantation exhibit surface electronic properties which change from p-type semiconducting behaviour to metallic behaviour; (c) the damage in the boron implanted diamond films is restricted to the surface layers since the electronic properties revert to p-type on depth profiling.
- CVD diamond films
- Scanning probe microscopy and spectroscopy
- Surface morphology and electronic structure