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The influence of the H2/Ar ratio on surface morphology and structural defects in homoepitaxial 4H-SiC films grown with methyltrichlorosilane

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2 Author(s)
Lu, P. ; Department of Chemical Engineering, Kansas State University, Manhattan, Kansas 66506 ; Edgar, J.H.

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Characterization of surface morphology and crystal defects is reported for homoepitaxial 4H-SiC films grown at high rates (35–40 μm/h) using methyltrichlorosilane (CH3SiCl3), as single precursor. The ratio of hydrogen to argon (H2/Ar) in the carrier gas was varied to determine the effect of hydrogen on the surface morphology and the crystalline defects. Due to hydrogen’s reaction with the graphite heater, adjusting the H2/Ar ratio effectively changed the C/Si ratio in the gas phase; thereby, influencing surface roughness and dislocation density. Low H2/Ar ratios of 0.1 and 0.125 produced smooth surfaces without step bunching. Higher H2/Ar ratios of 0.2 and 0.33 enhanced the conversion of basal plane dislocations into threading edge dislocations and reduced the density of basal plane dislocations to approximately 600 cm-2. However, at these H2/Ar ratios, macrosteps formed on the surface and the roughness increased. Micropipes from substrate dissociated into closed-core threading screw dislocations in the films grown with H2/Ar ratio in the range of 0.1–0.2. At H2/Ar ratio of 0.33, micropipes propagated into the film, generating hollow-core threading screw dislocations.

Published in:

Journal of Applied Physics  (Volume:101 ,  Issue: 5 )