Electron irradiation-induced deep level defects have been studied in InP which has undergone high-temperature annealing in phosphorus and iron phosphide ambients, respectively. In contrast to a high concentration of irradiation-induced defects in as-grown and phosphorus ambient annealed InP, InP pre-annealed in iron phosphide ambient has a very low concentration of defects. The phenomenon has been explained in terms of a faster recombination of radiation-induced defects in the annealed InP. The radiation-induced defects in the annealed InP have been compared and studied. (c) 2006 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.