Breakdown of Herring's processes in cubic semiconductors for sub-terahertz longitudinal acoustic phonons

Abstract : In the present work we explain the anomalous behavior of the attenuation of the longitudinal acoustic phonon in GaAs as a function of the phonon energy ω in the sub-THz domain. These attenuations along the [100] direction show a plateau between 0.6 and 1 GHz at low temperatures. We found an excellent agreement between measurements performed by some of us, and new ab initio calculations of third-order anharmonic processes. The formation of the plateau is explained by the competition between different phonon-phonon scattering processes as Herring's mechanism, which dominates at low frequencies, saturates and disappears. The plateau is shown to be determined by the phononic final-state phase-space available at a given temperature. We predict that a change of scattering mechanism should also show up in the attenuation of silicon around 1.2-1.7 THz, and argue that the attenuation plateau is a general feature of cubic semiconductors.
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Maxime Markov, Jelena Sjakste, Nathalie Vast, Romain Legrand, Bernard Perrin, et al.. Breakdown of Herring's processes in cubic semiconductors for sub-terahertz longitudinal acoustic phonons. Physical Review B : Condensed matter and materials physics, American Physical Society, 2018, ⟨10.1103/PhysRevB.98.245201⟩. ⟨hal-01976940⟩

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