Van der Waals epitaxy of the layered semiconductors SnSe2 and SnS2: Morphology and growth modes

R. Schlaf, N. R. Armstrong, B. A. Parkinson, C. Pettenkofer, W. Jaegermann

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

58 Scopus citations


The recent development of so-called van der Waals epitaxy offers a whole new variety of material combinations for semiconductor heterojunctions. In this paper we investigate the morphology and the growth modes of the layered semiconductors SnSe2 (Eg = 1.03 eV) and SnS2 (Eg = 2.18 eV) on a variety of layered single crystalline substrate materials (highly oriented pyrolytic graphite, MoTe2, MoS2, WSe2, GaSe, SnS2 and SnSe2). The growth modes were investigated by low energy electron diffraction, photoemission spectroscopy and scanning tunnelling microscopy. We found that both of the materials grow in a two-dimensional layer-by-layer fashion with three-dimensional nucleation. However, despite the strong similarities of both of the materials the results indicate that SnS2 grows in a more ideal layer-by-layer mode than SnSe2. This is attributed to different surface diffusion rates due to different growth temperatures. The difference in empirically determined optimized growth temperatures are explained by the different thermal stabilities of the materials.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1-14
Number of pages14
JournalSurface Science
Issue number1
StatePublished - Aug 1 1997


  • Growth modes
  • Layered chalcogenides
  • Low energy electron diffraction
  • Molecular beam epitaxy
  • Photoelectron spectroscopy
  • Scanning tunnelling microscopy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Surfaces and Interfaces
  • Surfaces, Coatings and Films
  • Materials Chemistry


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