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Ultrafast time-resolved extreme ultraviolet (XUV) photoelectron spectroscopy of hole transfer in a Zn/n-GaP Schottky junction.

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The addition of a metal overlayer to a semiconductor photocatalyst is a frequently used synthetic route to passivate the surface and, via the formation of a Schottky barrier, to enhance catalytic activity of the photocatalyst material. While it is known that Schottky junctions decrease recombination by charge separation, measurements of the depletion region dynamics have remained elusive. Here, we use ultrafast pump-probe transient photoelectron spectroscopy to measure material-specific dynamics of the Zn/n-GaP(100) system. Through photoemission measurements the Schottky barrier height is determined to be 2.1 ± 0.1 eV at 10 monolayers of total Zn deposition. Transient photoemission measurements utilizing a 400 nm pump pulse show that, after excitation, holes are transferred from n-GaP(100) to the Zn overlayer within a few ps, as evidenced by shifts of the Zn 3d and Ga 3d core levels to higher binding energies. Within the timescale of the experiment (130 ps) no carrier recombination is observed in the junction. Furthermore, a long-lived surface photovoltage signal is observed at times >1 ms after photoexcitation. This work further exemplifies the potential of transient extreme ultraviolet photoelectron spectroscopy as a material-specific technique for the study of heterojunctions.

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