Formation, ripening, and stability of epitaxially strained island arrays

Helen R. Eisenberg*, Daniel Kandel

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

20 Scopus citations


We study the formation and evolution of coherent islands on lattice-mismatched epitaxially strained films using two-dimensional evolution simulations. Faceted islands form in films with anisotropic surface tension. Under annealing, these islands ripen until a stable array is formed. We show that the presence of a cusp in the surface tension is essential for reproducing the experimentally observed characteristics of the stable island array. It is also shown that a single cusp in the surface energy is sufficient in order to explain the island-shape transition and associated bimodal island-size distribution which occurs in growth experiments. In films with isotropic surface tension we observe and explain a new mode of growth in which a stable wavy surface is formed.

Original languageAmerican English
Article number115423
JournalPhysical Review B - Condensed Matter and Materials Physics
Issue number11
StatePublished - 15 Mar 2005
Externally publishedYes


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