Quantum wells (QWs) are nanostructures consisting of alternating layers of a low and high band-gap semiconductor. The band gap of QWs can be tuned by changing the thickness of the low band-gap layer, due to quantum confinement effects. Although this principle is well established for crystalline materials, there is still controversy for QWs fabricated from amorphous materials: How strong are the confinement effects in amorphous QWs, where, because of the disorder, the carriers are localized to start with? We prepare an atomistic model of QWs based on a-Si:H to gain insight into this problem. The electronic structure of our atomistic QWs model is described with first-principles density functional theory, allowing us to study the confinement effects directly. We find that the quantum confinement effect is rather weak, compared to experimental results on a similar system.
Physical Review B
- Pub Date:
- September 2014
- Quantum wells;
- Amorphous semiconductors metallic glasses glasses;
- Density functional theory local density approximation gradient and other corrections;
- Molecular dynamics calculations and other numerical simulations