A general procedure for Auger-analysis characterization of the modes of growth during deposition of metal thin films onto layer-structured crystalline substrates is presented. It takes into account the crystallographic electron attenuation in both the overlayer structures and in the substrate layers, and it is found that the maximum Auger electronic escape-depth has a minimum at monolayer coverage. The model, which is based on ratios between electronic attenuation lengths, or between electronic inelastic mean free paths, is tested on thin-film growth of yttrium on MgO(100) and of yttrium and copper, respectively, on LaAlO3(100); its predictions on the modes of growth are confirmed, and it is further indicated that the degree of charge distribution and the change in bond lengths in the interface region may decrease with yttrium coverage.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Condensed Matter Physics
- Surfaces and Interfaces
- Surfaces, Coatings and Films
- Materials Chemistry