metalorganic vapour phase epitaxy abbr., MOVPE (rus. эпитаксия, газофазная) — 1) a variation of epitaxy as one of nanotechnological methods to fabricate semiconductor heterostructures; 2) a variation of a chemical vapour deposition where epitaxial films are produced.


Vapour phase epitaxial growth of monocrystalline layers of semiconductor materials on a substrate is done based on organometallic compounds in the reactor at under-pressure conditions. Vapour phase epitaxy was originally developed for growing silicon and gallium arsenide, and now it is used to grow most of the semiconductor materials used in micro- and optoelectronics. Mixed vapour enters the reactor where the substrates (thin slices of a monocrystal) are placed. In the case of silicon growing, the core component in the mixed vapour is silicon tetrachloride SiCl4 or silane SiH4; when growing arsenide and phosphidem, the main components are the respective metal alkyls (Ga(CH3)3, Al(CH3)3, Ga(C2H5)3, In(C2H5)3), as well as arsine AsH3 and phosphine PH3. The vapour mixture at high temperature decomposes in a pyrolytic way near the growth surface and the third group elements interact with the fifth group elements to form AIIIBV compounds. This results in the layer-by-layer deposition of semiconductor compounds. Vapour epitaxy is used to grow GaAlAs/GaAs heterostructures with quantum wells for injection lasers, GaAs/GaAlAs heterostructures with selective doping, heterostructures with quantum dots, wide-band GaN-based semiconductor materials to manufacture blue and green LEDs and short-wavelength lasers.


Vapor phase epitaxy unit reactor design.
Vapor phase epitaxy unit reactor design.


  • Gusev Alexander I.


  1. Gusev A. I. Nanomaterials, Nanostructures, and Nanotechnologies (in Russian) // Fizmatlit, Moscow (2007) - 416 pp.

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