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  • ’Sandpaper’ Alloy Eyed as Potential Semiconductor

Photonics Spectra
Jun 1999
Silicon carbide, a close cousin of sandpaper, may be used for a rugged new type of semiconductor, according to recent findings by a group of researchers from the University of Delaware in Newark.

The group created an alloy of silicon carbide and germanium. After heating the alloy, researchers observed that it changed from a translucent green to a reddish hue. They hypothesized that this color change was caused by a rearrangement of the material's electronic structure, or bandgap. They then used x-rays to map the sample and spectroscopy to better understand its properties.

Further experiments revealed that the alloy conducted about twice as much electrical current as silicon carbide alone.

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