Scanning Microscopy

Article Title

Diamond Luminescence


Luminescence spectroscopy is an established tool to investigate natural, high pressure synthesized, and chemical vapour deposited (CVD) diamond. The spectral range extends from 5.3 eV in the ultraviolet to approximately 1.2 eV in the near-infrared. More than 100 optical centres have been observed.

Since the early 1930's, semiconducting diamond for electronic devices has been of interest to science. The large bandgap (5.5 eV), low dielectric constant (5.7), and high thermal conductivity (about 5 times larger then that of Ag), as well as the superior charge-carrier transport properties, such as electron and hole mobility (µ-: 2200 cm2/Vs, μ+: 1600 cm2/Vs), lead to applications in active and passive electronics.

At the beginning of the 1980's, the first successful experiments of diamond films synthesis by low pressure chemical vapour deposition method were presented. Cathodoluminescence (CL) and photoluminescence (PL) are important techniques for characterising the defects present in CVD films and natural diamond.

In this presentation, the most significant luminescence bands, the defects and the problems with the models used to interpret the bands are discussed.

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