• iodine;
  • minority carrier lifetime;
  • passivation;
  • quinhydrone;
  • silicon;
  • surfaces;
  • X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy


Thumbnail image of graphical abstract

Hydrogen-terminated silicon substrates were passivated with quinhydrone–methanol (QHY/ME) and iodine–methanol (I2/ME), and the chemical changes occurring at the surface were investigated using X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS). The XPS surface studies demonstrate that QHY/ME passivation provides reduced oxidation, less carbon contamination, and a chemically inert surface. Electrical characterization also demonstrates higher minority carrier lifetimes of QHY/ME passivated substrates as compared to I2/ME passivated substrates. The quality of surface treatment was also characterized using the contact angle measurement, which confirms the presence of a hydrophobic organic layer on the surface after QHY/ME passivation.

Si 2p XPS spectra of the QHY/ME, I2/ME samples, and H-terminated silicon. With a peak at 102.9 eV for I2/ME, it is evident that it provides poor surface passivation than QHY/ME where no surface oxidation is observed.