Thin dielectric degradation during silicon selective epitaxial growth process

Yang Chin Shih*, Guobiao Zhang, Chen-Ming Hu, William G. Oldham

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


A fundamental issue in silicon selective epitaxial growth (SEG) processes is the impact of the pre-epitaxy silicon surface treatments and the SEG ambient on the properties of thin insulating materials exposed to the preclean environment. In this study, we compare pinhole formation in 10-50 nm thermal oxides with more robust oxide/nitride composites of similar thickness. The degradation of thin thermal oxide is attributed to pinhole formation and expansion in the ultrathin oxide layers during ex situ pre-epi surface treatments, in situ H2 prebake, and selective epitaxial deposition process. The superior resistance of oxide/nitride/oxide (ONO) structures to dielectric degradation may be attributed to the existence of the sandwiched silicon nitride layer which suppresses the mechanism of oxide decomposition during the pre-epitaxy wet cleaning, and the selective epitaxial growth processes.

Original languageEnglish
Number of pages1
JournalApplied Physics Letters
StatePublished - 1 Dec 1995

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