Breakdown of rotational symmetry at semiconductor interfaces: a microscopic description of valence subband mixing
Laboratoire de Physique de la Matière Condensée, École Normale Supérieure, 24 rue Lhomond,
75231 Paris Cedex 05, France
Corresponding author: a firstname.lastname@example.org
Published online: 15 May 2001
The recently discovered in-plane optical anisotropy of -grown quantum wells offers a new theoretical and experimental insight into the electronic properties of semiconductor interfaces. We first discuss the coupling of X and Y valence bands due to the breakdown of roto-inversion symmetry at a semiconductor hetero-interface, with special attention to its dependence on effective parameters such as the valence band offset. The intracell localization of Bloch functions is explained from simple theoretical arguments and evaluated numerically from a pseudo-potential microscopic model. The role of envelope functions is then considered, and we discuss the specific case of no-common atom interfaces. Experimental results and applications to interface characterization are presented. These calculations give a microscopic justification, and establish the limits of the heuristic "HBF" model.
PACS: 78.20.Fm – Birefringence / 78.20.Jq – Electrooptical effects
© EDP Sciences, Società Italiana di Fisica, Springer-Verlag, 2001