Coherent phonon modes of crystalline and amorphous Ge2Sb2Te5 thin films: A fingerprint of structure and bonding
Journal of Applied Physics
American Institute of Physics (AIP)
© 2015 AIP Publishing LLC
Femtosecond optical pump-probe measurements have been made upon epitaxial, polycrystalline, and amorphous thin films of Ge2Sb2Te5 (GST). A dominant coherent optical phonon mode of 3.4 THz frequency is observed in time-resolved anisotropic reflectance (AR) measurements of epitaxial films, and is inferred to have 3-dimensional T2-like character based upon the dependence of its amplitude and phase on pump and probe polarization. In contrast, the polycrystalline and amorphous phases exhibit a comparatively weak mode of about 4.5 THz frequency in both reflectivity (R) and AR measurements. Raman microscope measurements confirm the presence of the modes observed in pump-probe measurements, and reveal additional modes. While the Raman spectra are qualitatively similar for all three phases of GST, the mode frequencies are found to be different within experimental error, ranging from 3.2 to 3.6 THz and 4.3 to 4.7 THz, indicating that the detailed crystallographic structure has a significant effect upon the phonon frequency. While the lower frequency (3.6 THz) mode of amorphous GST is most likely associated with GeTe4 tetrahedra, modes in epitaxial (3.4 THz) and polycrystalline (3.2 THz) GST could be associated with either GeTe6 octahedra or Sb-Te bonds within defective octahedra. The more polarizable Sb-Te bonds are the most likely origin of the higher frequency (4.3-4.7 THz) mode, although the influence of Te-Te bonds cannot be excluded. The effect of high pump fluence, which leads to irreversible structural changes, has been explored. New modes with frequency of 3.5/3.6 THz in polycrystalline/amorphous GST may be associated with Sb2Te3 or GeTe4 tetrahedra, while a 4.2 THz mode observed in epitaxial GST may be related to segregation of Sb.
Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC)
Copyright © 2015 American Institute of Physics. This article may be downloaded for personal use only. Any other use requires prior permission of the author and the American Institute of Physics. The following article appeared in Journal of Applied Physics, Volume 117, article 025306, and may be found at http://dx.doi.org/10.1063/1.4905617
Vol. 117, article 025306