Patterning of Bi2Te3 Polycrystalline Thin-Films on Silicon

Report No. ARL-TR-4351
Authors: Brian Morgan and Patrick Taylor
Date/Pages: January 2008; 18 pages
Abstract: Bi2Te3-based thermoelectric (TE) energy conversion devices are an attractive possibility for recovering usable energy from waste heat. The integration of TE devices on silicon substrates opens the door for new highly integrated systems where micro-electro-mechanical systems (MEMS) heat exchangers and sensor/actuator technology can be leveraged to improve conversion efficiency and system capability. One roadblock on this path is the development of reliable patterning methods for fabricating thin-film TE devices on silicon micromachined substrates. This report gives the results from investigating patterning techniques for polycrystalline Bi2Te3 films grown using molecular beam epitaxy (MBE). Lithographic patterning and both wet and dry etch techniques are discussed. Results show that the developed processes can be used to precisely pattern features smaller than 10 µm on a side and are scalable to vertical dimensions (>> or ≥) 10 µm.
Distribution: Approved for public release
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Last Update / Reviewed: January 1, 2008