Monday, September 26, 2022

Bottom-up PEALD of SiO2 by growth inhibition for seamless gap-fill process

Bottom-up plasma-enhanced atomic layer deposition of SiO2 by utilizing growth inhibition using NH3 plasma pre-treatment for seamless gap-fill process

Yoenju Choi, Taehoon Kim, Hangyul Lee, Jusung Park, Juhwan Park, Dongho Ryu & Woojin Jeon

Scientific Reports volume 12, Article number: 15756 (2022)

The design-rule shrinkage in semiconductor devices is a challenge at every step of the integration process. In the gap-fill process for isolation, the seam and void formation cannot be suppressed by using a deposition process, which even has excellent step coverage. To achieve seamless gap fill in the high-aspect-ratio structure, which has a non-ideal etch profile such as a negative slope, the deposition process should be able to realize the “bottom-up growth” behavior. In this work, the bottom-up growth of a SiO2 plasma-enhanced atomic layer deposition (PE-ALD) process in a trench structure was investigated by using a growth inhibition process employing plasma treatment. N2 and NH3 plasma pre-treatments were employed to suppress the growth of the SiO2 PE-ALD process without any contamination, and the inhibition mechanism was investigated by performing surface chemistry analyses using X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy. Furthermore, the gap-fill characteristics of the SiO2 PE-ALD process were examined, depending on the process conditions of NH3 plasma pre-treatment, by performing cross-sectional field emission scanning electron microscopy measurements. Finally, a seamless gap-fill process in a high-aspect-ratio trench pattern was achieved by the bottom-up growth behavior of SiO2 PE-ALD using NH3 plasma pre-treatment.

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