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Nanomechanical Analysis of Etched Si Surface for Adaptively Coupled Plasma Etching System for Sub-20 nm SADP Process Applications

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In this study, an etching system together with the adaptively coupled plasma (ACP) source was employed, to measure the surface physical uniformity after plasma etching of 300 mm silicon wafers under various etching conditions. The physical uniformity of the Si surface was measured using a scanning probe microscope and a nano-indenter system. As the plasma source power was increased from 800 to 1200 W and the working pressure from 5 to 15 mTorr, the surface hardness changed from 9.51 to 9.94 GPa, and from 8.94 to 9.87 GPa, respectively. Under the same plasma conditions, the elastic modulus changed from 128.45 to 144.43 GPa, and from 91.26 to 141.75 GPa, respectively. These results indicate the hardening of the thin film surface owing to the very nature of the ACP source, which is characterized by high plasma density.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: January 1, 2015

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  • Science of Advanced Materials (SAM) is an interdisciplinary peer-reviewed journal consolidating research activities in all aspects of advanced materials in the fields of science, engineering and medicine into a single and unique reference source. SAM provides the means for materials scientists, chemists, physicists, biologists, engineers, ceramicists, metallurgists, theoreticians and technocrats to publish original research articles as reviews with author's photo and short biography, full research articles and communications of important new scientific and technological findings, encompassing the fundamental and applied research in all latest aspects of advanced materials.
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