Researchers at Kansas State University have developed a novel crucible design to significantly increase the efficiency of crystal growth using physical vapor transport. The new crucible allows for the vapor to be driven to the seed instead of other regions of the crucible lid, resulting in the vapor being remarkably concentrated on the seed and suppressing polycrystalline growth in other regions.
This crucible design is useful for improving the production of semiconductor crystals, particularly Scandium Nitride (ScN), Aluminum Nitride (AlN), and Silicon Carbide (SiC), using the physical vapor transport process.
- Increased Production at Lower Cost: This crucible would use lesser energy and lesser time to produce a larger crystal. Over a period of time, it is estimated to help increase crystal production by 40%, while at the same time notably reduce the production costs.
- Larger, Defect-Free Crystals: By directing the vapors to the seed, it helps produce larger crystals with fewer defects, while preventing the formation of crystals in unwanted areas of the crucible’s chamber. This can help maximize production while reducing wastage.
- Wide Applications: The crucible is designed for the production of a variety of commercially-relevant crystals – ScN, SiC and AlN.
- Competitive, Inexpensive Cost: This crucible is expected to cost similar to the existing crucibles used in the industry.
Applications and Commercial Opportunities
- This crucible design is useful for an increased, more efficient production of ScN, AlN and SiC semiconductor crystals. These crystals are used for a variety of applications, ranging from:
- Substrates for the growth of GaN crystals
- Semiconductor and electronic applications such as LEDs, lasers, electronic devices, IR detectors, and dielectric materials
Owner: Kansas State University
IP Protection Status: Pending Patent