>Experimental location of helium atoms in 6H–SiC crystal lattice after implantation and after annealing at 400 °C
The question of the helium behavior in silicon carbide has been studied at the atomic scale by numerical simulations, but no experiment has been carried out to assess the results hitherto. This paper describes the first experiments allowing this comparison. 6H–SiC single crystals were implanted with 50-keV He ions at a fluence of 1015 He/cm2 at room temperature. The as-received and as-implanted samples were analyzed by RBS and NRA in channeling mode along the main crystallographic planes and across three main axes. The measurements have shown that a portion of the He is located in the interstitial tetrahedral sites as predicted by the numerical simulations. The same measurements were performed on an implanted sample subsequently annealed at 400 °C under Ar atmosphere. They have shown that the quantity of He detected in interstitial tetrahedral sites TSi and TC has not significantly changed whereas that of He detected in the main crystallographic plane and in the main axis has increased. This increase is likely caused by He atoms migration at 400 °C toward interstitial positions located inside vacancies such as VSi and VSiVC. In parallel a partial recovery of the Si and C sublattices has been observed.