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Pamela Rueda-Fonseca

Magnetic quantum dots in II-VI semiconductor nanowires

Published on 16 February 2015

Thesis presented February 16, 2015

In this PhD work a novel type of magnetic semiconductor object has been developed: Cd(Mn)Te quantum dots embedded in ZnTe/ZnMgTe core-shell nanowires. The goal was to investigate the growth, by molecular beam epitaxy, and the fundamental properties of these complex heterostructures. For that purpose, two main issues were addressed: i) gaining control of the structural, electronic and magnetic properties of these quantum objects by mastering their growth; and ii) obtaining quantitative local knowledge on the chemical composition of those non-homogeneous nanostructures. To tackle these topics, our research was divided into four stages. The first stage was devoted to perform a quantitative study of the formation process of the Au particles that catalyze the growth of nanowires. The second stage involved the analysis of the mechanisms and parameters governing the growth of ZnTe nanowires. In particular, two different types of nanowires were found: cone-shaped nanowires with the zinc-blende crystal structure and cylinder-shaped nanowires with the hexagonal wurtzite structure. A diffusion-driven growth model is employed to fit some of the quantitative results presented in this part. The third stage focused on the insertion of pure CdTe quantum dots containing Mn ions in the core-shell nanowires. An initial study of the relevant parameters influencing the magneto-optical properties of these objects, such as the quantum dot confinement, the Mn incorporation, and the strain anisotropy, was performed. The four and last stage of this work concerned the quantitative interpretation of Energy-Dispersive X-ray spectroscopy measurements performed on single core-multishell nanowires. A geometrical model was proposed to retrieve the shape, the size and the local composition of the quantum dot insertions and of the multiple layers of the heterostructures. This study was coupled to other complementary characterization measurements on the same nanowire, such as cathodo-luminescence, micro-photo-luminescence and magneto-optical spectroscopy.

Nanomagnetism, Nanowires, Quantum Dots, Molecular Beam Epitaxy (MBE), Semiconductors, Energy-dispersive X-ray spectroscopy (EDX)

On-line thesis.