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Keywords:

  • X-ray diffraction;
  • nanofocused XRD;
  • energy scan;
  • 3D reciprocal-space mapping;
  • mechanical deformation/properties;
  • in situ AFM

Mechanical deformation of a SiGe island epitaxically grown on Si(001) was studied by a specially adapted atomic force microscope and nanofocused X-ray diffraction. The deformation was monitored during in situ mechanical loading by recording three-dimensional reciprocal-space maps around a selected Bragg peak. Scanning the energy of the incident beam instead of rocking the sample allowed the safe and reliable measurement of the reciprocal-space maps without removal of the mechanical load. The crystal truncation rods originating from the island side facets rotate to steeper angles with increasing mechanical load. Simulations of the displacement field and the intensity distribution, based on the finite-element method, reveal that the change in orientation of the side facets of about 25° corresponds to an applied pressure of 2–3 GPa on the island top plane.