Friday, May 28, 2010

US Patent 7723729 - Silicon nanowire buffer layer

Gallium nitride (GaN) is a semiconductor material having applicability in fabrication of blue LEDs and lasers. However, a problem with forming GaN on silicon is thermal and lattice mismatch which usually requires complicated buffering materials or extra fabrication process steps. This patent from Sharp teaches a way to use silicon nanowires as a buffer layer to simplify the process. Claim 1 reads:

1. A compound semiconductor-on-silicon (Si) wafer with a Si nanowire buffer layer, the wafer comprising:

a Si substrate;

an insulator layer overlying the Si substrate, with Si nanowires having compound semiconductor-coated tips; and,

a compound semiconductor layer overlying the insulator.