The growth mode of Nb on Si(111) has been studied by Auger Electron Spectroscopy. On samples cleaned by thermal annealing alone, the growth mode is layer-by-layer at room temperature, while at 300°C the Nb grows non-uniformly. The temperature dependence of the Auger signal following deposition indicates no substantial intermixing below 600°C and silicide formation at approximately 750°C. Cleaning the samples by a sputtering and annealing cycle dramatically changes the room temperature growth curve. The shape of the growth curve for the sputtered sample is consistent with either island growth or intermixing. © 1988.
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