• 61.72.Ji;
  • 61.72.Nn;
  • 68.35.Dv


The impact of self-interstitials and strain on the critical size for nucleation of incoherent precipitates is well-known. A factor that has been neglected so far is the incorporation of intrinsic point defects of the host matrix in the precipitate itself. It is shown that this can have an important impact both on the critical size and on the precipitated phase. The theoretical results are illustrated for the case of oxygen precipitation in silicon. The growing precipitate can also cause the nucleation of extended lattice defects such as dislocations and stacking faults in the surrounding matrix. A model is presented to predict stacking fault nucleation. (© 2005 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim)