Physical Review B (Condensed Matter) -- March 15, 1997 -- Volume 55, Issue 12, pp. 7653-7659

Two-dimensional facet nucleation and growth on Si(111)

Da-Jiang Liu, John D. Weeks, M. D. Johnson, and Ellen D. Williams


The lateral growth of an isolated nucleated facet is studied using a simple two-dimensional step model. An effective Hamiltonian that causes a planar surface to phase separate into facets and step bunches is proposed. The motions of the steps are determined by the relaxational dynamics of the effective Hamiltonian with and without a local conservation requirement. An even simpler mean-field-like model is used to illustrate the mechanism of the experimentally observed constant-velocity facet tip propagation. Numerical calculations using thermodynamic and transport coefficients previously measured give good agreement with experiments under the local conservation requirement.
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