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Study of reactive‐ion‐etch‐induced lattice damage in silicon by Ar, CF4, NF3, and CHF3 plasmas

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4 Author(s)
Connick, I‐Wen H. ; Philips Research Laboratories Sunnyvale, Signetics Company, Sunnyvale, California 94088‐3409 ; Bhattacharyya, Anjan ; Ritz, Kenneth N. ; Smith, W.Lee

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Reactive‐ion‐etch‐induced damage in silicon has been investigated using transmission electron microscopy (TEM), Rutherford backscattering (RBS) ion channeling, and laser‐induced thermal waves (TW). A correlation has been found between lattice damage in silicon due to reactive ion etching and leakage current properties of thermal oxide films subsequently grown on the damaged silicon. The silicon wafers were plasma etched using Ar, CF4, NF3, and CHF3 etch gases at dc bias voltages ranging from 150 V to 450 V. Lattice damage at the silicon surface, as determined by TEM and RBS, was found to depend on both the dc bias voltage and the etch chemistry. Subsequent leakage current measurements of the silicon oxides show that the samples with more silicon substrate lattice damage prior to oxidation also have correspondingly higher leakage. The thermal wave technique also indicates a damage dependence on dc bias and on etch chemistry; however, the thermal wave measurements indicate a damage dependence on etch chemistry different from TEM and RBS measurements. The source of this difference is not yet understood.

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Journal of Applied Physics  (Volume:64 ,  Issue: 4 )