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Phenomenological modeling of ion‐enhanced surface kinetics in fluorine‐based plasma etching

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3 Author(s)
Gray, David C. ; Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Department of Chemical Engineering, Cambridge, Massachusetts 02139 ; Tepermeister, I. ; Sawin, Herbert H.

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A multiple beam apparatus has been constructed to facilitate the study of ion‐enhanced fluorine chemistry on undoped polysilicon and silicon dioxide surfaces by allowing the fluxes of fluorine (F) atoms and argon (Ar+) ions to be independently varied over several orders of magnitude. The chemical nature of the etching surfaces has been investigated following the vacuum transfer of the sample dies to an adjoining x‐ray photoelectron spectroscopy facility. The etching ‘‘enhancement’’ effect of normally incident Ar+ ions has been quantified over a wide range of ion energy through the use of Kaufman and electron cyclotron resonance‐type ion sources. The increase in per ion etching yield of fluorine saturated silicon and silicon dioxide surfaces with increasing ion energy (Eion) was found to scale as (Eion1/2-Eth1/2), where Eth is the etching threshold energy for the process. Simple near‐surface site occupation models have been proposed for the quantification of the ion‐enhanced etching kinetics in these systems. Acceptable agreement has been found in comparison of these Ar+/F etching model predictions with similar Ar+/XeF2 studies reported in the literature, as well as with etching rate measurements made in F‐based plasmas of gases such as SF6 and NF3.

Published in:

Journal of Vacuum Science & Technology B: Microelectronics and Nanometer Structures  (Volume:11 ,  Issue: 4 )

Date of Publication:

Jul 1993

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