Dislocation free island formation in heteroepitaxial growth: a study at equilibrium

We investigate the equilibrium properties of strained heteroepitaxial systems, incorporating the formation and the growth of a wetting film, dislocation-free island formation, and ripening. The derived phase diagram provides a detailed characterization of the possible growth modes in terms of the island density, equilibrium island size, and wetting layer thickness. Comparing our predictions with experimental results we discuss the growth conditions that can lead to stable islands as well as ripening.


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