Gas phase preparation and analysis of semiconductor surfaces in a clustered reactor apparatus

Casey C. Finstad, Gerardo Montaño-Miranda, Adam G. Thorsness, Anthony J. Muscat

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Scopus citations


An integrated reactor system was built for studying gas phase surface preparation chemistries. The system integrates HF/vapor and UV photochemistry modules with an ultrahigh vacuum deposition reactor and a surface analysis chamber (x-ray photoelectron spectroscopy and Auger) for in situ surface preparation, deposition, and analysis. Each vacuum chamber is mounted on a separate, isolated branch from a main sample transfer tube. The system was designed for samples with variable shapes and thickness, but less than 64 mm (25 in.) in diameter. This design allows for rapid transfer times between chambers (<5 min) and for the simultaneous processing and storage of up to four samples. Use of standard sample transfer and vacuum hardware components minimized initial equipment costs and system maintenance. The capabilities of the clustered reactor apparatus and the importance of surface termination were demonstrated by (1) the removal of a mixed oxide and fluorocarbon residue on silicon, leaving the surface completely terminated with Cl atoms, (2) the removal of copper oxide and copper metal from silicon, (3) the deposition of Ti preferentially on a nonannealed, aqueous-cleaned SiO 2 surface relative to an annealed surface, and (4) the use of complementary surface analysis techniques to chemically identify hydrogen-bonded silanol groups on a silicon surface after HF/vapor etching. Gas phase cleaning and surface termination utilized a combination of HF/vapor (100 Torr, 27 °C for 200 s) and UV/Cl 2 (10 SCCM Cl 2, 90 °C for 15 min) steps. The results demonstrate that integrated processing provides a means to clean thin layers of organic, oxide, and metal contaminants from semiconductor surfaces and to control the terminating atom or chemical group.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number093907
JournalReview of Scientific Instruments
Issue number9
StatePublished - 2006
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Instrumentation


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