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The impact of in situ low-power plasma pretreatment, prior to silicon-nitride (SiN) deposition, was investigated in AlGaN/GaN high-electron mobility transistors (HEMTs). These studies reveal that the use of plasma in HEMT passivation reduces current-collapse and gate-lag effects. Such treatment is also beneficial to improve gate leakage, and from RF measurements, no degradation of was observed. These beneficial effects of the plasma pretreatment seem to be due to a significant reduction in interface charge density, as shown in this letter using GaN MIS devices, where a decrease of 60% was observed.