Possibility for rapid generation of high-pressure phases in single-crystal silicon by fast nanoindentation

Hu Huang, Jiwang Yan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)


High-pressure phases of silicon such as Si-XII/Si-III exhibit attractive optical, electrical and chemical properties, but until now, it has been technologically impossible to produce a significant quantity of Si-XII or Si-III. In this study, to explore the possibility of generating high-pressure silicon phases efficiently, comparative nanoindentation experiments were conducted. Effects of the loading rate, unloading rate and maximum indentation load were investigated, and key factors affecting the high-pressure phase formation were identified. A new nanoindentation protocol is proposed that introduces an intermediate holding stage into the unloading process. The resulting end phases under the indent were detected by a laser micro-Raman spectrometer and compared with those formed in conventional nanoindentation. The results indicate that high-pressure phases Si-XII and Si-III were successfully formed during the intermediate holding stage even with a very high loading/unloading rate. This finding demonstrates the possibility of rapid production of high-pressure phases of silicon through fast mechanical loading and unloading.

Original languageEnglish
Article number115001
JournalSemiconductor Science and Technology
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - 2015 Sept 28


  • high-pressure phase
  • load control
  • nanoindentation
  • phase transformation
  • single-crystal silicon

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering
  • Materials Chemistry


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