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Enhanced rates of oxide growth have been observed on silicon upon exposure to 10-keV X-ray irradiation. Oxide thicknesses were determined using spectroscopic ellipsometry on irradiated and control samples, and confirmed via X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy. The oxidation rate varied with the radiation total dose and dose rate. The increased oxidation rate is attributed to the generation of ozone, which decomposes into molecular oxygen and highly reactive atomic oxygen at the surface of the Si wafer. The generation of ozone by 10-keV X-rays was found to increase linearly with increasing dose rate. UV irradiation led to similarly enhanced oxidation rates. The potential application of this phenomenon to dosimetry is explored.
Date of Publication: Aug. 2012