Quantified Conditions for Reduction of ESO Contamination during SiC Metalization

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In metalization work, controlled semiconductor surfaces and interfaces are necessary. Trace impurities such as carbon and oxygen at the metal/semiconductor interface may improve or degrade the electrical characteristics of a desired contact. In this study, Auger Electron Spectroscopy (AES) was used to investigate electron stimulated oxidation (ESO) of SiC. The research focused on chamber conditions necessary to prevent oxide formation on SiC surfaces during thin film metal deposition. Oxidation rate was studied as a function of beam exposure ton and off), primary electron beam energy, E-p, (3-6 keV), electron beam current, I-p, (25-500 nA), and total chamber pressure. Oxidation rate had a stronger correlation to overall chamber pressure rather than the partial pressure of H2O, CO, or CO2 alone. Oxidation rate decreased slightly as E-p was increased. Rate of oxidation increased at higher pressures (2.2 x 10(-7) Torr) with respect to I-p but was nearly independent of I-p at lower pressures (7.1 x 10-9 Torr). No oxide growth was detectable to AES in the absence of exposure to the electron beam.

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