Inhomogeneous electron distribution in InN nanowires: Influence on the optical properties



In this work, we study theoretically and experimentally the influence of the surface electron accumulation on the optical properties of InN nanowires. For this purpose, the photoluminescence and photoluminescence excitation spectra have been measured for a set of self-assembled InN NWs grown under different conditions. The photoluminescence excitation experimental lineshapes have been reproduced by a self-consistent calculation of the absorption in a cylindrical InN nanowires. With the self-consistent model we can explore how the optical absorption depends on nanowires radius and doping concentration. Our model solves the Schrödinger equation for a cylindrical nanowire of infinite length, assuming a parabolic conduction band. The columnar geometry introduces effects in both the electron density and in the self-consistent conduction band profile, with no equivalence in planar layer. On the other hand, the differences in the photoluminescence excitation spectra are related to the inhomogeneous electron distribution inside the nanowires, caused by a bulk donor concentration and a two-dimensional density of ionized surface states. For nanowire radii larger than 30 nm, such concentrations modify the absorption edge and the lineshape, respectively, and can be determined from the comparison with the experimental data (© 2012 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim)