An XPS study of the early stages of silver photodiffusion in Ag/a-As2S3 films

H. Jain, A. Kovalskiy, A. Miller.

Journal of Non-Crystalline Solids, vol. 352, 2006, p. 562–566


X-ray induced structural changes at the Ag/As2S3 interface are investigated using X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy on the samples prepared within the spectrometer. The as-prepared film consists of stable heteropolar As–S bonds as well as ~16% S (and As) atoms in lower (higher) electron density configurations such as the –S–S– (–As–As–) segments with ‘wrong’ homopolar bonds. Two distinct stages of the X-ray induced diffusion are revealed. At first, silver reacts with atoms within –S–S– like segments to form Ag–S bonds. In the second stage, the Ag–S bonds decompose due to the reaction of S with As atoms within the –As–As– ‘wrong’ segments to form As–S heteropolar bonds, and silver diffuses away from the interface into the film. The results provide guideline for enhancing silver photodiffusion in chalcogenide glass. The irradiation of the (Ag–Te)/As2S3 sample with X-rays shows that not only Ag, but Te also diffuses away from the surface.


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