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The effect of strain on tunnel barrier height in silicon quantum devices



Ryan Stein, Michael Stewart


Semiconductor quantum dot (QD) devices experience a modulation of the band structure at the edge of lithographically defined gates due to mechanical strain. This modulation can play a prominent role in the device behavior at low temperatures, where QD devices operate. Here, we present measurements of the I-V characteristics of tunnel junctions defined by aluminum and titanium gates. These data reveal relative changes in the tunnel barrier height due to strain which agree with COMSOL simulations only if experimentally measured values of the coefficient of thermal expansion are used. Our results show that simulations which use bulk mechanical properties as inputs are not adequate highlighting the need for more experimental work.
Journal of Applied Physics


quantum dot, strain, tunnel junction, silicon


Stein, R. and Stewart, M. (2020), The effect of strain on tunnel barrier height in silicon quantum devices, Journal of Applied Physics, [online],, (Accessed May 25, 2024)


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Created July 12, 2020, Updated October 12, 2021