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With over 2000 terms defined and explained, Semiconductor Glossary is the most complete reference in the field of semiconductors on the market today.












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Term (Index) Definition
polycrystalline material, poly  long-range order exists only within limited in volume grains; grains are randomly connected to form a solid; size of grains in x-y-z directions varies depending on material and method of its formation, but there is no preferential extension of the single-crystal within the grain in any direction; readily available in the bulk form, but most commonly used as a thin film; common applications in Si devices: gate contact in MOSFETs, active material in TFTs, and as a substrate for Si solar cells.

Reference: See Semiconductor Notes for more information
amorphous material  non-crystalline solid; no periodicity and long-range order at all; lower quality than crystalline materials but cheaper to form; amorphous semiconductors are useful in large-area applications such as solar cells and flat panel displays; insulators used in semiconductor technology, e.g. SiO2 and Si3N4, are typically amorphous.

Reference: See Semiconductor Notes for more information
single-crystal, single-crystal material  crystalline solid in which atoms are arranged following specific pattern throughout the entire piece of material; i.e., long-range order exists throughout (not only within limited in volume grains); often referred to as a mono-crystal; in general, s.c. material features superior electronic and photonic properties as compared to multicrystalline, polyscrystalline and amorphous materials, but is more expensive; all high-performance semiconductor electronic and photonic devices are fabricated using single-crystal substrates; trade-off between performance and cost.

Reference: See Semiconductor Notes for more information
multicrystalline material  just like polycrystalline material maintains long-range order only within limited in volume grains; it differs from polycrystalline material in that the grains(i)in m.c. material are larger and (ii)are typically significantly expanded along the direction of solidification (z direction); also m.c material is in the form of wafers cut out of the ingot rather than thin-films; rarely used in device manufacturing until multi-crystalline Si was found to offer advantegous cost vs. efficiency relationship in solar cell technology.
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