Journal of Materials Science: Materials in Electronics
Local structure and magnetic properties of Mn and Co co-doped SiC
· Shaofeng Li
· Gaoliang Wang
· Jitao Li
· Kuili Liu
· Liuyang Xu
Received: 10 January 2018 / Accepted: 1 June 2018
© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2018
Mn and Co co-doped SiC ﬁlms were deposited on Si substrates by magnetron sputtering technique. The structure and
magnetism of the ﬁlms were investigated systematically. X-ray diﬀraction and X-ray photo-electron spectroscopy clearly
show that the ﬁlms are composed of 3C-SiC, in which Mn atoms substitute for the C sites of SiC lattice and Co atoms form
CoSi compounds. The valence analysis displays that Mn and Co elements exist in the form of Mn
ions in the
ﬁlms, respectively. The magnetic analysis indicates that the ﬁlms are ferromagnetic at room-temperature and the saturation
magnetization increases with increasing Mn substitution concentration. There are two ferromagnetic phases in the ﬁlms, the
Curie temperature at 240 K is associated with CoSi nanoparticles, while the Curie temperature observed above 300 K come
from Mn substitution and some extended defects. These features reveal that the room-temperature ferromagnetism of Mn
and Co co-doped SiC ﬁlms is intrinsic property of the material.
Since Dietl pointed out room ferromagnetic (FM) ordering
might exist in transition metal (TM) doped semiconductors,
diluted magnetic semiconductors (DMS) have attracted
considerable attention for their signiﬁcant potential appli-
cation in spintronics [1, 2]. With the miniaturization and
nanocrystallization of devices, the performance of Si-based
semiconductors gradually approaches to the limitation.
DMS are very expected to be a new generation semicon-
ductors replacing the present Si-based semiconductors .
Recently, SiC has attracted great interests for its excellent
physical properties, such as high breakdown ﬁled, high elec-
tron saturation drift velocity and high thermal conductivity.
These merits make SiC a highly promising candidate for
high-temperature, high-power and high-frequency electronic
It is well accepted that doping is a frequently-used method
of changing DMS properties and co-doping could improve
the material stability and physical properties [7, 8]. In recent
years, many eﬀorts have been devoted to developing FM
properties of semiconductors based on TM elements (such as
Mn, Co and Fe) dopant in lattices [9–11]. Yet to determine
the origin of FM behavior and to enhance the Curie tem-
perature (Tc) of these materials above the room-temperature
remains challenging. For instance, Li et al. pointed out that
dopants could improve FM in the Fe and Ni co-doped In
ﬁlms . Suzuki et al. reported that Vand Al co-doped ZnO
ﬁlms had better resistance than single element doping .
Coye et al. indicated that defects played a crucial role in
the theoretical model of defect-related ferromagnetism .
In these previous work, although many results have been
achieved in study of the magnetic properties of semiconduc-
tors, it remains diﬃcult to clearly understanding the origin
of FM. On the other hand, there has been very little attention
paid to studying TM co-doped SiC thin ﬁlms.
In this paper, Mn and Co co-doped SiC ﬁlms were fabri-
cated by magnetron sputtering. The inﬂuence of Mn and Co
doping on the structure, compositions and magnetic prop-
erties of the ﬁlms was studied systematically. Furthermore,
we investigated the ferromagnetism origin in the Mn and Co
co-doped SiC ﬁlms and the Curie temperature as function
impurities concentrations. A high Curie temperature above
room temperature for Mn and Co co-doped SiC ﬁlms was
observed, which makes these materials a very good candi-
date to be used in spintronic devices.
* Kuili Liu
* Liuyang Xu
School of Physics and Telecommunication Engineering,
Zhoukou Normal University, Zhoukou 466001, China