Cathodoluminescence nano-characterization of semiconductors

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We give an overview of the use of cathodoluminescence (CL) in scanning electron microscopy (SEM) for the nano-scale characterization of semiconducting materials and devices. We discuss the technical aspects of the measurement, such as factors limiting the spatial resolution and design considerations for efficient collection optics. The advantages of more recent developments in the technique are outlined, including the use of the hyperspectral imaging mode and the combination of CL and other SEM-based measurements. We illustrate these points with examples from our own experience of designing and constructing CL systems and applying the technique to the characterization of III-nitride materials and nanostructures.
Original languageEnglish
Article number064005
Number of pages8
JournalSemiconductor Science and Technology
Issue number6
Early online date29 Mar 2011
Publication statusPublished - 30 Jun 2011


  • optics
  • condensed matter
  • electrical matter
  • thin films
  • cathodoluminescence


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