Defense Date


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy


Nanoscience and Nanotechnology

First Advisor

Michael Reshchikov

Second Advisor

Alison Baski


Time-resolved photoluminescence (TRPL) measurements paired with steady-state photoluminescence (SSPL) measurements can help to determine the PL lifetime, shape and position of unresolved bands, capture coefficients, and concentrations of free electrons and defects.PL bands that are obscured in the SSPL spectra can be accurately revealed by TRPL measurements. TRPL measurements are able to show if the PL band originates from an internal transition between different states of the same defect. The main defect-related PL bands in high-purity GaN grown by hydride vapor phase epitaxy (HVPE) which have been investigated are the ultraviolet, blue, green, yellow and red luminescence bands (UVL, BL, GL, YL and RL, respectively). The concentration of free electrons can be calculated from these measurements providing a contactless alternative to the Hall effect method. The lifetime of most defect-related PL bands decreases with increasing temperature. However, the lifetime of the GL band, with a maximum at 2.4 eV observed in the SSPL spectra only at high excitation intensity, increases as a function of temperature. By analyzing the PL intensity decay, the origin of the GL can be attributed to an internal transition from an excited state of the CN defect, which behaves as an optically generated giant trap, to the 0/+ level of the same defect. This first observation of an optically generated giant trap was detected by analyzing the cubic temperature dependence of the electron capture coefficient. Excitation intensity and temperature dependent studies on Mg-doped GaN grown by HVPE were performed. The position of the UVL (3.2 eV) peak blue-shifts with increasing excitation intensity, which can be explained by the presence of potential fluctuations. The BL peak (2.8 eV) also blue-shifts with increasing excitation intensity, and red-shifts as a function of temperature. These shifts can be explained by the transitions originating from a deep-donor to the MgGa acceptor, and the corresponding donor-acceptor pair nature.


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