Thursday, May 28, 2015

Building an advanced PEALD chamber out of a scrap AMAT P5000

Here is a story about a cool guy building advanced PEALD chamber out of a scrap AMAT P5000. I´m thinning we want to know all the details since then there are a lot of them out there to convert fro ALD! Parts of the story down here:

Lion Surplus serves as a repository for equipment, furniture and other supplies that Penn State departments no longer need. The store is open to the general public as well as the University community.

“Last spring we bought two optical tables at Surplus,” Jackson said. “They’re these big, heavy tables that have a vibration isolation system for setting up optically based experiments. One of them is now in a lab in the Millennium Science Center and it’s used as part of a project sponsored by Dow Chemical on flexible and printed electronics. The other one went to a relatively new faculty member here in electrical engineering who is starting up and growing his research program. So we got the advantage of low cost, and this repurposed equipment is serving Penn State research in an important way.”

Jackson offered an example of another valuable find: several years ago he spotted a nondescript metal box at Surplus. Recognizing the box as the chamber from an Applied Materials P5000, a commercial semiconductor process tool, he bought it at a low cost.

“My students and I used this as the starting point to build a new tool — a plasma enhanced atomic layer deposition system,” he said. “Now we have a system that allows us to do things that no expensive commercial system would. And my students’ understanding of this is far beyond what it would be if we had just bought a commercial system. The students have a sense of ownership.”

According to this publication (ZnO thin film transistors by low temperature deposition plasma-enhanced atomic layer deposition in a showerhead reactor) the AMAT P5000 PEALD reactor has the following features and capabilities after the upgrade:
  • The system is based on an Applied Materials P5000 showerhead chamber and uses a manual, single wafer, load lock. 
  • A load-locked, constant pressure, constant flow, showerhead, weak oxidant, PEALD system. 
  • A simple sample heating stage is used with either 200 mm wafers or smaller samples on aluminum 200 mm carriers. 
  • The system operates in a constant flow, constant pressure mode, with reactants and carrier gases switched in or out of the total gas flow as needed. In this mode, the sample is always exposed to gases exiting the showerhead, with little or no mixing from downstream gases. This approach also allows fast changes of reaction gas components. 
  • Typical deposition pressure is 1.5 torr and typical total flow is 1150 sccm. 
  • The volume of the region between the showerhead and substrate is about 1 liter, resulting in a gas residence time of about 100 milliseconds.