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Determination of surface energy characteristics of plasma processed ultra low-k dielectrics for optimized wetting in wet chemical plasma etch residue removal

: Ahner, N.; Zimmermann, S.; Schaller, M.; Schulz, S.E.


Mertens, P. ; Interuniversity Micro-Electronics Center -IMEC-, Louvain:
Ultra clean processing of semiconductor surfaces XI : Selected, peer reviewed papers from the 11th International Symposium on Ultra Clean Processing of Semiconductor Surfaces (UCPSS), September 17 - 19, 2012, Gent, Belgium
Durnten-Zurich: TTP, 2013 (Solid state phenomena 195)
ISBN: 978-3-03-785527-0
International Symposium on Ultra Clean Processing of Semiconductor Surfaces (UCPSS) <11, 2012, Gent>
Fraunhofer ENAS ()

The integration of porous ultra low dielectric constant materials (ULK) for isolation within the interconnect system of integrated circuits is a promising approach to reduce RC-delays and crosstalk due to shrinking feature sizes [1]. Actually the focus is on porous CVD-SiCOH materials, which consist of a Si-O-Si backbone and organic species (e.g. CH3) to lower polarizability and prevent moisture uptake to remarkably decrease the k-value [2]. The integration of porous low-k materials is very challenging, especially looking at patterning, resist stripping and etch residue removal, where commonly plasma processing has been applied. But plasma processing of ULK materials, especially using oxygen plasmas, is known to degrade electrical, optical and structural material properties by removing carbon from the film and densification of the surface near areas of the ULK [5]. Carbon depletion may also lead to the incorporation of-OH groups, which easily form silanols and therefore increase moisture absorption and k-values [2]. Besides the development of nondamaging plasma processes, wet cleaning is a promising alternative to avoid ULK damage while removing organic plasma etch residues. Additionally wet cleaning steps are always necessary to remove inorganic residues, which do not form volatile reaction products and can therefore not be removed by plasma processing.