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- Adherence/Diffusion Barrier Layers for Copper Metallization: Amorphous Carbon:Silicon Polymerized Films
- Semiconductor circuitry feature miniaturization continues in response to Moore 's Law pushing the limits of aluminum and forcing the transition to Cu due to its lower resistivity and electromigration. Copper diffuses into silicon dioxide under thermal and electrical stresses, requiring the use of barriers to inhibit diffusion, adding to the insulator thickness and delay time, or replacement of SiO2 with new insulator materials that can inhibit diffusion while enabling Cu wetting. This study proposes modified amorphous silicon carbon hydrogen (a-Si:C:H) films as possible diffusion barriers and replacements for SiO2 between metal levels, interlevel dielectric (ILD), or between metal lines (IMD), based upon the diffusion inhibition of previous a-Si:C:H species expected lower dielectric constants, acceptable thermal conductivity. Vinyltrimethylsilane (VTMS) precursor was condensed on a titanium substrate at 90 K and bombarded with electron beams to induce crosslinking and form polymerized a-Si:C:H films. Modifications of the films with hydroxyl and nitrogen was accomplished by dosing the condensed VTMS with water or ammonia before electron bombardment producing a-Si:C:H/OH and a-Si:C:H/N and a-Si:C:H/OH/N polymerized films in expectation of developing films that would inhibit copper diffusion and promote Cu adherence, wetting, on the film surface. X-ray Photoelectron Spectroscopy was used to characterize Cu metallization of these a-Si:C:H films. XPS revealed substantial Cu wetting of a-Si:C:H/OH and a-Si:C:H/OH/N films and some wetting of a-Si:C:H/N films, and similar Cu diffusion inhibition to 800 K by all of the a-:S:C:H films. These findings suggest the possible use of a-Si:C:H films as ILD and IMD materials, with the possibility of further tailoring a-Si:C:H films to meet future device requirements.
- Chemistry, Detection, and Control of Metals during Silicon Processing
- This dissertation focuses on the chemistry, detection, and control of metals and metal contaminants during manufacturing of integrated circuits (ICs) on silicon wafers. Chapter 1 begins with an overview of IC manufacturing, including discussion of the common aqueous cleaning solutions, metallization processes, and analytical techniques that will be investigated in subsequent chapters. Chapter 2 covers initial investigations into the chemistry of the SC2 clean - a mixture of HCl, H2O2, and DI water - especially on the behavior of H2O2 in this solution and the impact of HCl concentration on metal removal from particle addition to silicon oxide surfaces. Chapter 3 includes a more generalized investigation of the chemistry of metal ions in solution and how they react with the silicon oxide surfaces they are brought into contact with, concluding with illumination of the fundamental chemical principles that govern their behavior. Chapter 4 shows how metal contaminants behave on silicon wafers when subjected to the high temperature (≥ 800 °C) thermal cycles that are encountered in IC manufacturing. It demonstrates that knowledge of some fundamental thermodynamic properties of the metals allow accurate prediction of what will happen to a metal during these processes. Chapter 5 covers a very different but related aspect of metal contamination control, which is the effectiveness of metal diffusion barriers (e.g. Ru) in holding a metal of interest, (e.g. Cu), where it is wanted while preventing it from migrating to places where it is not wanted on the silicon wafer. Chapter 6 concludes with an overview of the general chemical principles that have been found to govern the behavior of metals during IC manufacturing processes.
- Copper Electrodeposition on Iridium, Ruthenium and Its Conductive Oxide Substrate
- The aim of this thesis was to investigate the physical and electrochemical properties of sub monolayer and monolayer of copper deposition on the polycrystalline iridium, ruthenium and its conductive oxide. The electrochemical methods cyclic voltammetry (CV) and chronocoulometry were used to study the under potential deposition. The electrochemical methods to oxidize the ruthenium metal are presented, and the electrochemical properties of the oxide ruthenium are studied. The full range of CV is presented in this thesis, and the distances between the stripping bulk peak and stripping UPD peak in various concentration of CuSO4 on iridium, ruthenium and its conductive oxide are shown, which yields thermodynamic data on relative difference of bonding strength between Cu-Ru/Ir atoms and Cu-Cu atoms. The monolayer of UPD on ruthenium is about 0.5mL, and on oxidized ruthenium is around 0.9mL to 1.0mL. The conductive oxide ruthenium presents the similar properties of ruthenium metal. The pH effect of stripping bulk peak and stripping UPD peak of copper deposition on ruthenium and oxide ruthenium was investigated. The stripping UPD peak and stripping bulk peak disappeared after the pH ≥ 3 on oxidized ruthenium electrode, and a new peak appeared, which means the condition of pH is very important. The results show that the Cl- , SO42- , Br- will affect the position of stripping bulk peak and stripping UPD peak: the stripping bulk peak will shift and decrease if the concentration of halide ions is increasing, and the monolayer of UPD will increase at the same time.
- Cu electrodeposition on Ru with a chemisorbed iodine surface layer.
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An iodine surface layer has been prepared on Ru(poly) and Ru(0001) electrodes by exposure to iodine vapor in UHV and polarizing in a 0.1 M HClO4/0.005 M KI solution, respectively. A saturation coverage of I on a Ru(poly) electrode passivates the Ru surface against significant hydroxide, chemisorbed oxygen or oxide formation during exposure to water vapor over an electrochemical cell in a UHV-electrochemistry transfer system. Immersion of I-Ru(poly) results in greater hydroxide and chemisorbed oxygen formation than water vapor exposure, but an inhibition of surface oxide formation relative that of the unmodified Ru(poly) surface is still observed. Studies with combined electrochemical and XPS techniques show that the iodine surface adlayer remained on top of the surface after cycles of overpotential electrodeposition/dissolution of copper on both Ru(poly) and Ru(0001) electrodes. These results indicate the potential bifunctionality of iodine layer to both passivate the Ru surface in the microelectronic processing and to act as a surfactant for copper electrodeposition. The electrodeposition of Cu on Ru(0001) or polycrystalline Ru was studied using XPS with combined ultrahigh vacuum/electrochemistry methodology (UHV-EC) in 0.1 M HClO4 with Cu(ClO4)2 concentrations ranging from 0.005 M to 0.0005 M, and on polycrystalline Ru in a 0.05M H2SO4/0.005 M CuSO4/0.001 M NaCl solution. The electrochemical data show well-defined cyclic voltammograms (CV) with a Cu underpotential deposition (UPD) peak and overpotential deposition (OPD) peak. XPS spectra of Ru electrodes emersed from perchloric acid solution at cathodic potentials indicate that ClO4- anions dissociate to yield specifically adsorbed Cl and ClOx species. Subsequent Cu deposition results in the formation of a thin, insoluble Cu(II) film with Cu(I) underneath. In contrast, similar deposition on polycrystalline Ru in the sulfuric acid/Cu sulfate solution with NaCl added yields only Cu(0), indicating that the formation of Cu(II) and Cu(I) involves both Cl and perchlorate interactions with the deposited Cu. A pre-adsorbed layer of iodine on the Ru(0001) surface inhibits perchlorate dissociation in iodide-free electrolyte and leads to the deposition of Cu(0) in the perchlorate bath. XPS depth profile analysis demonstrates that the iodine monolayer "floats" on top of the deposited film, in agreement with previous results, effectively protecting the Cu film from air oxidation.
- Electrochemical Synthesis and Characterization of Inorganic Materials from Aqueous Solutions
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The dissertation consists of the following three sections: 1. Hydroxyapatite (HA) coatings. In this work, we deposited HA precursor films from weak basic electrolytic solution (pH= 8-9) via an electrochemical approach; the deposits were changed into crystallite coatings of hydroxyapatite by sintering at specific temperatures (600-800 ºC). The formed coatings were mainly characterized by powder X-ray diffraction (XRD), Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR), and scanning electron microscopy (SEM). XRD patterns show well-defined peaks of HA when sintered under vacuum conditions. FTIR measurements indicate the existence of hydroxyl groups, which were confirmed by the characteristic intensity of the stretching and bending bands at ~3575 and ~630 cm-1, respectively. The SEM shows an adhesive, crack free morphology for the double-layer coating surface of the samples sintered in a vacuum furnace. 2. Silver/polymer/clay nanocomposites. Silver nanoparticles were prepared in layered clay mineral (montmorillonite)/polymer (PVP: poly (vinyl pyrrolidone)) suspension by an electrochemical approach. The silver particles formed in the bulk suspension were stabilized by the PVP and partially exfoliated clay platelets, which acted as protective colloids to prevent coagulation of silver nanoparticles together. The synthesized silver nanoparticles/montmorillonite/PVP composite was characterized and identified by XRD, SEM, and TEM (transmission electron microscopy) measurements. 3. Ce-doped lead zirconate titanate (PZT) thin films. In this study, we fabricated cerium-doped PZT films (molar ratio of Zr/Ti:: 0.5:0.5) via cathodic electrodeposition on the indium tin oxide ( ITO) coated glass substrate. In the preparation process, the PZT films were modified by adding a small amount of cerium dopants, which led to the formation of Ce-doped PZT films after sintering at high temperatures. The fabricated PZT films on the ITO coated glass substrate may be used as electro-optic devices in the industrial application.
- Electrodeposition of adherent copper film on unmodified tungsten.
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Adherent Cu films were electrodeposited onto polycrystalline W foils from purged solutions of 0.05 M CuSO4 in H2SO4 supporting electrolyte and 0.025 M CuCO3∙Cu(OH)2 in 0.32 M H3BO3 and corresponding HBF4 supporting electrolyte, both at pH = 1. Films were deposited under constant potential conditions at voltages between -0.6 V and -0.2 V vs Ag/AgCl. All films produced by pulses of 10 s duration were visible to the eye, copper colored, and survived a crude test called "the Scotch tape test", which stick the scotch tape on the sample, then peel off the tape and see if the copper film peels off or not. Characterization by scanning electron microscopy (SEM), energy dispersive X-ray (EDX) and X-ray photon spectroscopy (XPS) confirmed the presence of metallic Cu, with apparent dendritic growth. No sulfur impurity was observable by XPS or EDX. Kinetics measurements indicate that the Cu nucleation process in the sulfuric bath is slower than in the borate bath. In both baths, nucleation kinetics do not correspond to either instantaneous or progressive nucleation. Films deposited from 0.05 M CuSO4/H2SO4 solution at pH > 1 at -0.2 V exhibited poor adhesion and decreased Cu reduction current. In both borate and sulfate baths, small Cu nuclei are observable by SEM upon deposition at higher negative overpotentials, while only large nuclei (~ 1 micron or larger) are observed upon deposition at less negative potentials.
- Electrodeposition of Copper on Ruthenium Oxides and Bimetallic Corrosion of Copper/Ruthenium in Polyphenolic Antioxidants
- Copper (Cu) electrodeposition on ruthenium (Ru) oxides was studied due to important implications in semiconductor industry. Ruthenium, proposed as the copper diffusion barrier/liner material, has higher oxygen affinity to form different oxides. Three different oxides (the native oxide, reversible oxide, and irreversible oxide) were studied. Native oxide can be formed on exposing Ru in atmosphere. The reversible and irreversible oxides can be formed by applying electrochemical potential. Investigation of Cu under potential deposition on these oxides indicates the similarity between native and reversible oxides by its nature of inhibiting Cu deposition. Irreversible oxide formed on Ru surface is rather conductive and interfacial binding between Cu and Ru is greatly enhanced. After deposition, bimetallic corrosion of Cu/Ru in different polyphenols was studied. Polyphenols are widely used as antioxidants in post chemical mechanical planarization (CMP). For this purpose, different trihydroxyl substituted benzenes were used as antioxidants. Ru, with its noble nature enhances bimetallic corrosion of Cu. Gallic acid (3,4,5 - trihydroxybenzoic acid) was chosen as model compound. A mechanism has been proposed and validity of the mechanism was checked with other antioxidants. Results show that understanding the chemical structure of antioxidants is necessary during its course of reaction with Cu.
- Electrodeposition of Diamond-like Carbon Films
- Electrodeposition of diamond-like carbon (DLC) films was studied on different substrates using two different electrochemical methods. The first electrochemical method using a three-electrode system was studied to successfully deposit hydrogenated DLC films on Nickel, Copper and Brass substrates. The as-deposited films were characterized by scanning electron microscopy (SEM), Raman spectroscopy, X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS), fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR) and cyclic voltammetry (CV). A variety of experimental parameters were shown to affect the deposition process. The second electrochemical method was developed for the first time to deposit hydrogen free DLC films on Ni substrates through a two-electrode system. The as-deposited films were characterized by Raman spectroscopy and FTIR. According to Raman spectra, a high fraction of diamond nanocrystals were found to form in the films. Several possible mechanisms were discussed for each deposition method. An electrochemical method was proposed to deposit boron-doped diamond films for future work.
- Experimental Determination of L, Ostwald Solubility Solute Descriptor for Illegal Drugs By Gas Chromatography and Analysis By the Abraham Model
- The experiment successfully established the mathematical correlations between the logarithm of retention time of illegal drugs with GC system and the solute descriptor L from the Abraham model. the experiment used the method of Gas Chromatography to analyze the samples of illegal drugs and obtain the retention time of each one. Using the Abraham model to calculate and analyze the sorption coefficient of illegal drugs is an effective way to estimate the drugs. Comparison of the experimental data and calculated data shows that the Abraham linear free energy relationship (LFER) model predicts retention behavior reasonably well for most compounds. It can calculate the solute descriptors of illegal drugs from the retention time of GC system. However, the illegal drugs chosen for this experiment were not all ideal for GC analysis. HPLC is the optimal instrument and will be used for future work. HPLC analysis of the illegal drug compounds will allow for the determination of all the solute descriptors allowing one to predict the illegal drugs behavior in various Abraham biological and medical equations. the results can be applied to predict the properties in biological and medical research which the data is difficult to measure. the Abraham model will predict more accurate results by increasing the samples with effective functional groups.
- Fabrication and light scattering study of multi-responsive nanostructured hydrogels and water-soluble polymers.
- Monodispersed microgels composed of poly-acrylic acid (PAAc) and poly(N-isopropylacrylamide) (PNIPAM) interpenetrating networks were synthesized by 2-step method with first preparing PNIPAM microgel and then polymerizing acrylic acid that interpenetrates into the PNIPAM network. The semi-dilute aqueous solutions of the PNIPAM-PAAc IPN microgels exhibit an inverse thermo-reversible gelation. Furthermore, IPN microgels undergo the reversible volume phase transitions in response to both pH and temperature changes associated to PAAc and PNIPAM, respectively. Three applications based on this novel hydrogel system are presented: a rich phase diagram that opens a door for fundamental study of phase behavior of colloidal systems, a thermally induced viscosity change, and in situ hydrogel formation for controlled drug release. Clay-polymer hydrogel composites have been synthesized based on PNIPAM gels containing 0.25 to 4 wt% of the expandable smectic clay Na-montmorillonite layered silicates (Na-MLS). For Na-MLS concentrations ranging from 2.0 to 3.2 wt%, the composite gels have larger swelling ratio and stronger mechanical strength than those for a pure PNIPAM. The presence of Na-MLS does not affect the value of the lower critical solution temperature (LCST) of the PNIPAM. Surfactant-free hydroxypropyl cellulose (HPC) microgels have been synthesized in salt solution. In a narrow sodium chloride concentration range from 1.3 to 1.4 M, HPC chains can self-associate into colloidal particles at room temperature. The microgel particles were then obtained in situ by bonding self-associated HPC chains at 23 0C using divinyl sulfone as a cross-linker. The volume phase transition of the resultant HPC microgels has been studied as a function of temperature at various salt concentrations. A theoretical model based on Flory-Huggins free energy consideration has been used to explain the experimental results. Self-association behavior and conformation variation of long chain branched (LCB) poly (2-ethyloxazoline) (PEOx) with a CH3-(CH2)17 (C18) modified surface are investigated using light scattering techniques in various solvents. The polymer critical aggregation concentration (cac) strongly depends on solvent polarity, decreasing as the solvent becomes more hydrophobic.
- FTIR-ATR Characterization of Hydrogel, Polymer Films, Protein Immobilization and Benzotriazole Adsorption on Copper Surface
- Plasma polymerization techniques were used to synthesize and deposit hydrogel on silicon (Si) substrate. Hydrogel is a network of polymer chains that are water-insoluble and has a high degree of flexibility. The various fields of applications of hydrogel include drug release, biosensors and tissue engineering etc. Hydrogel synthesized from different monomers possess a common property of moisture absorption. In this work two monomers were used namely 1-amino-2-propanol (1A2P) and 2(ethylamino)ethanol (2EAE) to produce polymer films deposited on Si ATR crystal. Their moisture uptake property was tested using FTIR-ATR technique. This was evident by the decrease in -OH band in increasing N2 purging time of the films. Secondly, two monomer compounds namely vinyl acetic acid and glycidyl methacrylate which have both amine and carboxylic groups are used as solid surface for the immobilization of bovine serum albumin (BSA). Pulsed plasma polymerization was used to polymerize these monomers with different duty cycles. Initial works in this field were all about protein surface adsorption. But more recently, the emphasis is on covalent bonding of protein on to the surface. This immobilization of protein on solid surface has a lot of applications in the field of biochemical studies. The polymerization of vinyl acetic acid and glycidyl methacrylate were shown as successful method to attach protein on them. Chemical mechanical polishing (CMP) of Cu is one of the processes in the integrated chips manufacturing industry. Benzotriazole is one of the constituents of this CMP slurry used as corrosion inhibitor for Cu. Benzotriazole (C6H5N3) is a nitrogen heterocyclic derivative having three nitrogen atoms, each with an unshared pair of electrons, forming five-membered ring structure. This molecule coordinates with Cu atoms by loosing a proton from one of its nitrogen atom and thereby forming a film which is polymeric in nature that prevents further oxidation of Cu. In this work, aqueous solution of BTA was used to study the adsorption characteristics on Cu when a Cu electrodeposited Si was immersed in to it. This study was performed using ATR-FTIR technique. The adsorption of BTA on Cu surface was evident by the presence of aryl C-H stretching band at 3061 cm-1.
- Hydrogen terminated silicon surfaces: Development of sensors to detect metallic contaminants and stability studies under different environments
- Hydrogen terminated silicon surfaces have been utilized to develop sensors for semiconductor and environmental applications. The interaction of these surfaces with different environments has also been studied in detail. The sensor assembly relevant to the semiconductor industry utilizes a silicon-based sensor to detect trace levels of metallic contaminants in hydrofluoric acid. The sensor performance with respect to two non-contaminating reference electrode systems was evaluated. In the first case, conductive diamond was used as a reference electrode. In the second case, a dual silicon electrode system was used with one of the silicon-based electrodes protected with an anion permeable membrane behaving as the quasi reference electrode. Though both systems could function well as a suitable reference system, the dual silicon electrode design showed greater compatibility for the on-line detection of metallic impurities in HF etching baths. The silicon-based sensor assembly was able to detect parts- per-trillion to parts-per-billion levels of metal ion impurities in HF. The sensor assembly developed for the environmental application makes use of a novel method for the detection of Ni2+using attenuated total reflection (ATR) technique. The nickel infrared sensor was prepared on a silicon ATR crystal uniformly coated by a 1.5 micron Nafion film embedded with dimethylglyoxime (DMG) probe molecules. The detection of Ni2+ was based on the appearance of a unique infrared absorption peak at 1572 cm-1 that corresponds to the C=N stretching mode in the nickel dimethylglyoximate, Ni(DMG)2, complex. The suitable operational pH range for the nickel infrared sensor is between 6-8. The detection limit of the nickel infrared sensor is 1 ppm in the sample solution of pH=8. ATR - FTIR spectroscopy was used to study the changes that the hydride mode underwent when subjected to different environments. The presence of trace amounts of Cu2+ in HF solutions was found to roughen the silicon surface as observed ATR-IR spectroscopy. The initial stages of oxidation in UPW and Cu2+ / UPW was studied. Trace amounts of Cu2+ were found to drastically increase the rate of oxidation, while the rate of oxidation was found to be retarded on removing dissolved oxygen that was present in UPW.
- Interfacial Electrochemistry and Surface Characterization: Hydrogen Terminated Silicon, Electrolessly Deposited Palladium & Platinum on Pyrolyzed Photoresist Films and Electrodeposited Copper on Iridium
- Hydrogen terminated silicon surfaces play an important role in the integrated circuit (IC) industry. Ultra-pure water is extensively used for the cleaning and surface preparation of silicon surfaces. This work studies the effects of ultra-pure water on hydrogen passivated silicon surfaces in a short time frame of 120 minutes using fourier transform infrared spectroscopy – attenuated total reflection techniques. Varying conditions of ultra-pure water are used. This includes dissolved oxygen poor media after nitrogen bubbling and equilibration under nitrogen atmosphere, as well as metal contaminated solutions. Both microscopically rough and ideal monohydride terminated surfaces are examined. Hydrogen terminated silicon is also used as the sensing electrode for a potentiometric sensor for ultra-trace amounts of metal contaminants. Previous studies show the use of this potentiometric electrode sensor in hydrofluoric acid solution. This work is able to shows sensor function in ultra-pure water media without the need for further addition of hydrofluoric acid. This is considered a boon for the sensor due to the hazardous nature of hydrofluoric acid. Thin carbon films can be formed by spin coating photoresist onto silicon substrates and pyrolyzing at 1000 degrees C under reducing conditions. This work also shows that the electroless deposition of palladium and platinum may be accomplished in hydrofluoric acid solutions to attain palladium and platinum nanoparticles on a this film carbon surface for use as an electrode. Catalysis of these substrates is studied using hydrogen evolution in acidic media, cyclic voltammetry, and catalysis of formaldehyde. X-ray diffractometry (XRD) is used to ensure that there is little strain on palladium and platinum particles. Iridium is thought to be a prime candidate for investigation as a new generation copper diffusion barrier for the IC industry. Copper electrodeposition on iridium is studied to address the potential of iridium as a copper diffusion barrier. Copper electrodeposition is studied using a current-transient technique to obtain insight into the nucleation and growth mechanism. Copper on iridum was annealed up to 600 degrees C. X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy and XRD confirm that electrodeposited copper exists in a metallic state. XRD shows that copper exists in the characteristic face-centered cubic (111) form. XRD also confirms the stability of the copper-iridium interface with no new peaks after annealing, which is indicative that no interaction occurs. Scanning electron microscopy, and Scotch ® Tape peel tests confirm the uniformity and strength of copper on iridium even after annealing to 600 degrees C.
- Interfacial Electrochemistry of Metal Nanoparticles Formation on Diamond and Copper Electroplating on Ruthenium Surface
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An extremely facile and novel method called spontaneous deposition, to deposit noble metal nanoparticles on a most stable form of carbon (C) i.e. diamond is presented. Nanometer sized particles of such metals as platinum (Pt), palladium (Pd), gold (Au), copper (Cu) and silver (Ag) could be deposited on boron-doped (B-doped) polycrystalline diamond films grown on silicon (Si) substrates, by simply immersing the diamond/Si sample in hydrofluoric acid (HF) solution containing ions of the corresponding metal. The electrons for the reduction of metal ions came from the Si back substrate. The diamond/Si interfacial ohmic contact was of paramount importance to the observation of the spontaneous deposition process. The metal/diamond (M/C) surfaces were investigated using Raman spectroscopy, scanning electron microscopy (SEM), x-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS) and x-ray diffractometry (XRD). The morphology (i.e. size and distribution) of metal nanoparticles deposits could be controlled by adjusting the metal ion concentration, HF concentration and deposition time. XRD data indicate the presence of textured and strained crystal lattices of Pd for different Pd/C morphologies, which seem to influence the electrocatalytic oxidation of formaldehyde (HCHO). The sensitivity of electrocatalytic reactions to surface crystal structure implies that M/C could be fabricated for specific electrocatalytic applications. The research also presents electroplating of Cu on ruthenium (Ru), which a priori is a promising barrier material for Cu interconnects in the sub 0.13 μm generation integrated circuits (ICs). Cu plates on Ru with over 90% efficiency. The electrochemical nucleation and growth studies using the potentiostatic current transient method showed a predominantly progressive nucleation of Cu on Ru. This was also supported by SEM imaging, which showed that continuous thin films of Cu (ca. 400 Å) with excellent conformity could be plated over Ru without dendrite formation. Scotch tape peel tests and SEM on Cu/Ru samples both at room temperature (RT) and after annealing at 800 oC, showed no sign of delamination of the Cu film from Ru indicating strong adhesion. XRD patterns from Cu/Ru samples at RT through 800 oC indicated Cu in its characteristic face centered cubic (fcc) form with (111) phase dominating. Most importantly no new XRD peak emerged, even after annealing to 800 oC showing Cu and Ru did not interact much. The excellent adhesion and lack of metallurgical interactions between Cu and Ru underscored the potential application of Ru as a new Cu diffusion barrier in the next generation ICs.
- Interfacial Study of Copper Electrodeposition with the Electrochemical Quartz Crystal Microbalance (EQCM)
- The electrochemical quartz crystal microbalance (EQCM) has been proven an effective mean of monitoring up to nano-scale mass changes related to electrode potential variations at its surface. The principles of operation are based on the converse piezoelectric response of quartz crystals to mass variations on the crystal surface. In this work, principles and operations of the EQCM and piezo-electrodes are discussed. A conductive oxide, ruthenium oxide (RuO2) is a promising material to be used as a diffusion barrier for metal interconnects. Characterization of copper underpotential deposition (UPD) on ruthenium and RuO2 electrodes by means of electrochemical methods and other spectroscopic methods is presented. Copper electrodeposition in platinum and ruthenium substrates is investigated at pH values higher than zero. In pH=5 solutions, the rise in local pH caused by the reduction of oxygen leads to the formation of a precipitate, characterized as posnjakite or basic copper sulfate by means of X-ray electron spectroscopy and X-ray diffraction. The mechanism of formation is studied by means of the EQCM, presenting this technique as a powerful in-situ sensing device.
- Metal Oxide Reactions in Complex Environments: High Electric Fields and Pressures above Ultrahigh Vacuum
- Metal oxide reactions at metal oxide surfaces or at metal-metal oxide interfaces are of exceptional significance in areas such as catalysis, micro- and nanoelectronics, chemical sensors, and catalysis. Such reactions are frequently complicated by the presence of high electric fields and/or H2O-containing environments. The focus of this research was to understand (1) the iron oxide growth mechanism on Fe(111) at 300 K and 500 K together with the effect of high electric fields on these iron oxide films, and (2) the growth of alumina films on two faces of Ni3Al single crystal and the interaction of the resulting films with water vapor under non-UHV conditions. These studies were conducted with AES, LEED, and STM. XPS was also employed in the second study. Oxidation of Fe(111) at 300 K resulted in the formation of Fe2O3 and Fe3O4. The substrate is uniformly covered with an oxide film with relatively small oxide islands, i.e. 5-15 nm in width. At 500 K, Fe3O4 is the predominant oxide phase formed, and the growth of oxide is not uniform, but occurs as large islands (100 - 300 nm in width) interspersed with patches of uncovered substrate. Under the stress of STM induced high electric fields, dielectric breakdown of the iron oxide films formed at 300 K occurs at a critical bias voltage of 3.8 ± 0.5 V at varying field strengths. No reproducible result was obtained from the high field stress studies of the iron oxide formed at 500 K. Ni3Al(110) and Ni3Al(111) were oxidized at 900 K and 300 K, respectively. Annealing at 1100 K was required to order the alumina films in both cases. The results demonstrate that the structure of the 7 Å alumina films on Ni3Al(110) is k-like, which is in good agreement with the DFT calculations. Al2O3/Ni3Al(111) (γ'-phase) and Al2O3/Ni3Al(110) (κ-phase) films undergo drastic reorganization and reconstruction, and the eventual loss of all long-range order upon exposure to H2O pressure > 10-5 Torr. Al2O3/Ni3Al(110) film is significantly more sensitive to H2O vapor than the Al2O3/Ni3Al(111) film, and this may be due to the incommensurate nature of the oxide/Ni3Al(110) interface. STM measurements indicate that this effect is pressure- rather than exposure- dependent, and that the oxide instability is initiated at the oxide surface, rather than at the oxide/metal interface. The effect is not associated with formation of a surface hydroxide, yet is specific to H2O (similar O2 exposures have no effect).
- Passivation effects of surface iodine layer on tantalum for the electroless copper deposition.
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The ability to passivate metallic surfaces under non-UHV conditions is not only of fundamental interests, but also of growing practical importance in catalysis and microelectronics. In this work, the passivation effect of a surface iodine layer on air-exposed Ta for the copper electroless deposition was investigated by X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS) and scanning electron microscopy (SEM). Although the passivation effect was seriously weakened by the prolonged air exposure, iodine passivates the Ta substrate under brief air exposure conditions so that enhanced copper wetting and adhesion are observed on I-passivated Ta relative to the untreated surface.
- Process Evaluation and Characterization of Tungsten Nitride as a Diffusion Barrier for Copper Interconnect Technology
- The integration of copper (Cu) and dielectric materials has been outlined in the International Technology Roadmap for Semiconductors (ITRS) as a critical goal for future microelectronic devices. A necessity toward achieving this goal is the development of diffusion barriers that resolve the Cu and dielectric incompatibility. The focus of this research examines the potential use of tungsten nitride as a diffusion barrier by characterizing the interfacial properties with Cu and evaluating its process capability for industrial use. Tungsten nitride (β-W2N) development has been carried out using a plasma enhanced chemical vapor deposition (PECVD) technique that utilizes tungsten hexafluoride (WF6), nitrogen (N2), hydrogen (H2), and argon (Ar). Two design of experiments (DOE) were performed to optimize the process with respect to film stoichiometry, resistivity and uniformity across a 200 mm diameter Si wafer. Auger depth profiling showed a 2:1 W:N ratio. X-ray diffraction (XRD) showed a broad peak centered on the β-W2N phase. Film resistivity was 270 mohm-cm and film uniformity < 3 %. The step coverage (film thickness variance) across a structured etched dielectric (SiO2, 0.35 mm, 3:1 aspect ratio) was > 44 %. Secondary ion mass spectroscopy (SIMS) measurements showed good barrier performance for W2N between Cu and SiO2 with no intermixing of the Cu and silicon when annealed to 390o C for 3 hours. Cu nucleation behavior and thermal stability on clean and nitrided tungsten foil (WxN = δ-WN and β-W2N phases) have been characterized by Auger electron spectroscopy (AES) and thermal desorption spectroscopy (TDS) under controlled ultra high vacuum (UHV) conditions. At room temperature, the Auger intensity ratio vs. time plots demonstrates layer by layer Cu growth for the clean tungsten (W) surface and three-dimensional nucleation for the nitride overlayer. Auger intensity ratio vs. temperature measurements for the Cu/W system indicates a stable interface up to 1000 K. For the Cu /WxN/W system, initial Cu diffusion into the nitride overlayer is observed at 550 K.
- Reactivity of Oxide Surfaces and Metal-Oxide Interfaces: Effects of Water Vapor Pressure on Ultrathin Aluminum Oxide Films, and Studies of Platinum Growth Modes on Ultrathin Oxide Films and Their Effects on Adhesion
- The reactivity of oxide surfaces and metal-oxide interfaces play an important role in many technological applications such as corrosion, heterogeneous catalysis, and microelectronics. The focus of this research was (1) understanding the effects of water vapor exposure of ultrathin aluminum oxide films under non-ultrahigh vacuum conditions (>10-9 Torr) and (2) characterization of Pt growth modes on ultrathin Ta silicate and silicon dioxide films and the effects of growth modes on adhesion of a Cu overlayer. These studies were conducted with X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS). Ni3Al(110) was oxidized (10-6 Torr O2, 800K) followed by annealing (1100K). The data indicate that the annealed oxide film is composed of NiO, Al2O3 and an intermediate phase denoted here as "AlOx". Upon exposure of the oxide film at ambient temperature to increasing water vapor pressure (10-6 - 5 Torr), a shift in both the O(1s) and Al(2p)oxide peak maxima to lower binding energies is observed. In contrast, exposure of Al2O3/Al(polycrystalline) to water vapor under the same conditions results in a high binding energy shoulder in the O(1s) spectra which indicates hydroxylation. Spectral decomposition provides further insight into the difference in reactivity between the two oxide films. The corresponding trends of the O(1s)/Ni0(2p3/2) and Al(2p)/Ni0(2p3/2) spectral intensity ratios suggest conformal changes of the oxide film on Ni3Al(110). The growth behavior of sputter deposited Pt at ~300K on Ta silicate and SiO2 ultrathin films formed on Si(100) was investigated. The XPS data show that Pt deposition results in uniform growth or "wetting" on Ta silicate and 2-D cluster growth on SiO2. Electroless Cu deposition on ~11 monolayers (ML) Pt/Ta silicate film results in an adherent Cu film which passed the Scotch tape test. In contrast, electroless Cu deposition on ~11ML Pt/SiO2 results in a non-adherent Cu film due to weak Pt/SiO2 interaction.
- The Revival of Electrochemistry: Electrochemical Deposition of Metals in Semiconductor Related Research
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Adherent Cu films were electrodeposited onto polycrystalline W foils from purged solutions of 0.05 M CuSO4 in H2SO4 supporting electrolyte and 0.025 M CuCO3∙Cu(OH)2 in 0.32 M H3BO3 and corresponding HBF4 supporting electrolyte, both at pH = 1. Films were deposited under constant potential conditions at voltages between -0.6 V and -0.2 V versus Ag/AgCl. All films produced by pulses of 10 s duration were visible to the eye, copper colored, and survived a crude test called "the Scotch tape test", which involves sticking the scotch tape on the sample, then peeling off the tape and observing if the copper film peels off or not. Characterization by scanning electron microscopy (SEM)/energy dispersive X-ray (EDX) and X-ray photon spectroscopy (XPS) confirmed the presence of metallic Cu, with apparent dendritic growth. No sulfur impurity was observable by XPS or EDX. Kinetics measurements indicated that the Cu nucleation process in the sulfuric bath is slower than in the borate bath. In both baths, nucleation kinetics does not correspond to either instantaneous or progressive nucleation. Films deposited from 0.05 M CuSO4/H2SO4 solution at pH > 1 at -0.2 V exhibited poor adhesion and decreased Cu reduction current. In both borate and sulfate baths, small Cu nuclei are observable by SEM upon deposition at higher negative overpotentials, while only large nuclei (~ 1 micron or larger) are observed upon deposition at less negative potentials. Osmium metal has been successfully electrodeposited directly onto p-Si (100) from both Os3+ and Os4+ in both sulfuric and perchloric baths. This electrochemical deposition of osmium metal can provide sufficient amount of osmium which overcome ion beam implantation limitations. The deposited metal can undergo further processing to form osmium silicides, such as Os2Si3, which can be used as optical active materials. The higher osmium concentration results in large deposition currents and more negative peak potential due to larger transfer coefficient. No matter which supporting electrolyte is used, no stripping peak exists in this study. The oxidation ability of anion plays an important role in osmium electrodeposition because it will change the silicon substrate conductivity. In our case, perchloric acid oxidized silicon surface severely. Os4+ seems more favorable for reduction but has a stronger oxidization ability to lower the conductivity. The microscopic images verified osmium is deposited on silicon and forms cluster sizes of < 1 µm to > 10 µm. The Rutherford backscattering spectroscopy (RBS) data indicate osmium can diffuse into the silicon as far as 500 nm and the Si crystal structure is unchanged by the process. This means that the Si does not disassociate and migrate into deposited Os. Osmium is distributed randomly throughout the lattice interstitially. It appears field assisted diffusion can significantly drive the Os into Si (100). This finding is very valuable but needs further study.
- Study of Copper Electrodeposition on Ruthenium Oxide Surfaces and Bimetallic Corrosion of Copper/Ruthenium in Gallic Acid Solution
- Ruthenium, proposed as a new candidate of diffusion barrier, has three different kinds of oxides, which are native oxide, electrochemical reversible oxide and electrochemical irreversible oxide. Native oxide was formed by naturally exposed to air. Electrochemical reversible oxide was formed at lower anodic potential region, and irreversible oxides were formed at higher anodic potential region. In this study, we were focusing on the effect of copper electrodeposition on each type of oxides. From decreased charge of anodic stripping peaks and underpotential deposition (UPD) waves in cyclic voltammetry (CV), efficiency of Cu deposition dropped off indicating that interfacial binding strength between Cu and Ru oxides was weakened when the Ru surface was covered with irreversible oxide and native oxide. Also, Cu UPD was hindered by both O2 and H2 plasma modified Ru surfaces because the binding strength between Cu and Ru was weakened by O2 and H2 plasma treatment. Cu/Ru and Cu/Ta bimetallic corrosion was studied for understanding the corrosion behavior between diffusion barrier (Ta and Ru) and Cu interconnects under the post chemical mechanical planarization (CMP) process in semiconductor fabrication. Gallic acid is used in post CMP slurry solution and is known well as antioxidant which is supposed to oxidize itself to prevent other species from oxidizing. However, in this study under the observation of Cu microdot corrosion test, copper was corroded only in gallic acid at specific pH region of alkaline condition which is close to the pH region for post CMP solution formula. With different pH alkaline condition, gallic acid formed different oxidized products which are characterized by cyclic voltammetry and UV-Vis spectroscopy. Therefore, the specific oxidized product from particular pH region condition caused the Cu corrosion. Also, the corrosion rate of Cu microdots was influenced by substrate effect (Cu/Ru and Cu/Ta) and ambient control, which was included in this study.
- Study of Interactions Between Diffusion Barrier Layers and Low-k Dielectric Materials for Copper/Low-k Integration
- The shift to the Cu/low-k interconnect scheme requires the development of diffusion barrier/adhesion promoter materials that provide excellent performance in preventing the diffusion and intermixing of Cu into the adjacent dielectrics. The integration of Cu with low-k materials may decrease RC delays in signal propagation but pose additional problems because such materials are often porous and contain significant amounts of carbon. Therefore barrier metal diffusion into the dielectric and the formation of interfacial carbides and oxides are of significant concern. The objective of the present research is to investigate the fundamental surface interactions between diffusion barriers and various low-k dielectric materials. Two major diffusion barriers¾ tatalum (Ta) and titanium nitride (TiN) are prepared by DC magnetron sputtering and metal-organic chemical vapor deposition (MOCVD), respectively. Surface analytical techniques, such as X-ray photoelectronic spectroscopy (XPS), transmission electron microscopy (TEM), and atomic force microscopy (AFM) are employed. Ta sputter-deposited onto a Si-O-C low dielectric constant substrate forms a reaction layer composed of Ta oxide and TaC. The composition of the reaction layer varies with deposition rate (1 Å-min-1 vs. 2 Å-sec-1), but in both cases, the thickness of the TaC layer is found to be at least 30 Å on the basis of XPS spectra, which is corroborated with cross-sectional TEM data. Sputter-deposited Cu will not wet the TaC layer and displays facile agglomeration, even at 400 K. Deposition for longer time at 2 Å-sec-1 results in formation of a metallic Ta layer. Sputter deposited Cu wets (grows conformally) on the metallic Ta surface at 300 K, and resists significant agglomeration at up to ~ 600 K. Cu diffusion into the substrate is not observed up to 800 K in the UHV environment. Tetrakis(diethylamido) titanium (TDEAT) interactions with SiO2, Cu and a variety of low-k samples in the presence (~ 10-7 Torr or co-adsorbed) and absence of NH3 result in different products. TDEAT interactions with SiO2 are dominated by Ti interactions with substrate oxygen sites, and that Ti oxide/sub-oxide bond formation can proceed with relatively low activation energy. No Ti carbide or Si carbide formation is observed. Co-adsorption of TDEAT and NH3 on SiO2 at 120K followed by annealing to higher temperature results in enhanced Ti-N bond formation, which is stable against oxidation up to 900K in UHV. Similarly, continuous exposures of TDEAT on SiO2 at 500K in the presence of NH3 exhibit a relatively enhanced Ti-N spectral component. Co-adsorption of NH3 and TDEAT on Cu (poly) surface at 120K, followed by annealing to 500K, results in complete desorption of Ti, N or C-containing species from the Cu substrate. Reaction of TDEAT with a Cu surface at 500K yields a Ti-alkyl species via a b-hydride elimination pathway. TDEAT/Cu interactions are not observably affected by overpressures of NH3 of 10-7 Torr. TDEAT interaction with a porous carbon doped oxide low-k substrate at 700K demonstrates undissociated or partly dissociated Ti-NR species trapped in the dielectrics matrix due to its high porosity. In addition, carbide formation is observed from C(1s) XPS spectra. For a hydrocarbon low-k film, the majority sites (carbon) are highly unreactive towards TDEAT even at higher temperature due to a lack of functional groups to initiate the TDEAT/low-k surface chemistry.
- Study of Ruthenium and Ruthenium Oxide's Electrochemical Properties and Application as a Copper Diffusion Barrier
- As a very promising material of copper diffusion barrier for next generation microelectronics, Ru has already obtained a considerable attention recently. In this dissertation, we investigated ruthenium and ruthenium oxide electrochemical properties and the application as a copper diffusion barrier. Cu under potential deposition (UPD) on the RuOx formed electrochemically was first observed. Strong binding interaction, manifesting by the observed Cu UPD process, exists between Cu and Ru as well as its conductive ruthenium oxide. Since UPD can be conformally formed on the electrode surface, which enable Ru and RuOx has a potential application in the next generation anode. The [Cl-] and pH dependent experiment were conducted, both of them will affect UPD Cu on Ru oxide. We also found the Cu deposition is thermodynamically favored on RuOx formed electrochemically. We have studied the Ru thin film (5nm) as a copper diffusion barrier. It can successfully block Cu diffusion annealed at 300 oC for 10min under vacuum, and fail at 450 oC. We think the silicidation process at the interface between Ru and Si. PVD Cu/Ru/Si and ECP Cu/Ru/Si were compared each other during copper diffusion study. It was observed that ECP Cu is easy to diffuse through Ru barrier. The function of RuOx in diffusion study on Cu/Ru/Si stack was discussed. In pH 5 Cu2+ solution, Ru and Pt electrochemical behavior were investigated. A sharp difference was observed compared to low pH value. The mechanism in pH 5 Cu2+ solution was interpreted. An interesting compound (posnjakite) was obtained during the electrochemical process. An appropriate formation mechanism was proposed. Also Cu2O was formed in the process. We found oxygen reduction reaction is a key factor to cause this phenomenon.
- Study of Substituted Benzenesulfonate-Containing Layered Double Hydroxides and Investigation of the Hexamethylenetetramine Route of LDH Synthesis
- Benzenesulfonates, para-substituted with amine, chloride and methyl groups were successfully incorporated into layered double hydroxides of two different compositions, 2:1 Mg-Al LDH and 2:1 Zn-Al LDH. These parent materials were also doped with small amounts of nickel and the differences in the two systems were studied. The hexamethylenetetramine route of layered double hydroxide synthesis was investigated to verify if the mechanism is indeed homogeneous. This included attempting preparation of 2:1 Mg-Al LDH, 2:1 Zn-Al LDH and 2:1 Zn-Cr LDH with two different concentrations of hexamethylenetetramine. The analytical data of the products suggest that the homogeneous precipitation may not be the true mechanism of reaction involved in LDH synthesis by this method.
- Synthesis and study of crystalline hydrogels, guided by a phase diagram.
- Monodispersed nanoparticles of poly-N-isopropylacrylamide-co-allylamine (PNIPAM-co-allylamine) and PNIPAM-co-acrylic acid (AA) have been synthesized and used as building blocks for creating three-dimensional networks. The close-packed PNIPAM-co-allylamine and PNIPAM-co-AA nanoparticles were stabilized by covalently bonding neighboring particles at room temperature and at neutral pH; factors which make these networks amicable for drug loading and release. Controlled release studies have been performed on the networks using dextran markers of various molecular weights as model macromolecular drugs. Drug release was quantified under various physical conditions including a range of temperature and molecular weight. These nanoparticle networks have several advantages over the conventional bulk gels for controlling the release of biomolecules with large molecular weights. Monodispersed nanoparticles of poly-N-isopropylacrylamide-co-allylamine (PNIPAM-co-allylamine) can self-assemble into crystals with a lattice spacing on the order of the wavelength of visible light. By initiating the crystallization process near the colloidal crystal melting temperature, while subsequently bonding the PNIPAM-co-allylamine particles below the glass transition temperature, a nanostructured hydrogel has been created. The crystalline hydrogels exhibit iridescent patterns that are tunable by the change of temperature, pH value or even protein concentration. This kind of soft and wet hydrogel with periodic structures may lead to new sensors, devices, and displays operating in aqueous solutions, where most biological and biomedical systems reside. The volume-transition equilibrium and the interaction potential between neutral PINPAM particles dispersed in pure water were investigated by using static and dynamic light-scattering experiments. From the temperature-dependent size and energy parameters, the Sutherland-like potential provides a reasonable representation of the inter-particle potential for PNIPAM particles in swollen and in collapsed phases. An aqueous dispersion of PNIPAM particles can freeze at both high and low temperatures. At low temperatures, the freezing occurs at a large particle volume fraction, similar to that in a hard-sphere system; while at high temperature, the freezing occurs at low particle concentrations, driven by the strong van der Waals attraction due to the collapsed microgel particles. The calculated phase diagram has been confirmed semi-quantitatively by experiments.
- The synthesis and study of poly(N-isopropylacrylamide)/poly(acrylic acid) interpenetrating polymer network nanoparticle hydrogels.
- Homogeneous hydrogels made of an interpenetrating network of poly(N-isopropylacrylamide) (PNIPAm) and poly(acrylic acid) (PAAc) are synthesized by a two-step process; first making PNIPAm hydrogels and then interpenetrating acrylic acid throughout the hydrogel through polymerization. The kinetic growth of the IPN is plotted and an equation is fitted to the data. When diluted to certain concentrations in water, the hydrogels show reversible, inverse thermal gelation at about 34°C. This shows unique application to the medical field, as the transition is just below body temperature. A drug release experiment is performed using high molecular weight dyes, and a phase diagram is created through observation of the purified, concentrated gel at varying concentrations and temperatures.
- Tantalum- and ruthenium-based diffusion barriers/adhesion promoters for copper/silicon dioxide and copper/low κ integration.
- The TaSiO6 films, ~8Å thick, were formed by sputter deposition of Ta onto ultrathin SiO2 substrates at 300 K, followed by annealing to 600 K in 2 torr O2. X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS) measurements of the films yielded a Si(2p) binding energy at 102.1 eV and Ta(4f7/2) binding energy at 26.2 eV, indicative of Ta silicate formation. O(1s) spectra indicate that the film is substantially hydroxylated. Annealing the film to > 900 K in UHV resulted in silicate decomposition to SiO2 and Ta2O5. The Ta silicate film is stable in air at 300K. XPS data show that sputter-deposited Cu (300 K) displays conformal growth on Ta silicate surface (TaSiO6) but 3-D growth on the annealed and decomposed silicate surface. Initial Cu/silicate interaction involves Cu charge donation to Ta surface sites, with Cu(I) formation and Ta reduction. The results are similar to those previously reported for air-exposed TaSiN, and indicate that Si-modified Ta barriers should maintain Cu wettability under oxidizing conditions for Cu interconnect applications. XPS has been used to study the reaction of tert-butylimino tris(diethylamino) tantalum (TBTDET) with atomic hydrogen on SiO2 and organosilicate glass (OSG) substrates. The results on both substrates indicate that at 300K, TBTDET partially dissociates, forming Ta-O bonds with some precursor still attached. Subsequent bombardment with atomic hydrogen at 500K results in stoichiometric TaN formation, with a Ta(4f7/2) feature at binding energy 23.2 eV and N(1s) at 396.6 eV, leading to a TaN phase bonded to the substrate by Ta-O interactions. Subsequent depositions of the precursor on the reacted layer on SiO2 and OSG, followed by atomic hydrogen bombardment, result in increased TaN formation. These results indicate that TBTDET and atomic hydrogen may form the basis for a low temperature atomic layer deposition (ALD) process for the formation of ultraconformal TaNx or Ru/TaNx barriers. The interactions of sputter-deposited ruthenium with OSG at 300 K have been studied by XPS for Ru coverages from ~ 0.1 monolayer to several monolayers, using in-situ sample transfer between the deposition and analysis chambers. The results indicate Stranski-Krastanov (SK) type growth, with the completion of the first layer of Ru at an average thickness corresponding to 1 monolayer average coverage. Ru(0) is the only electronic state present. XPS core level spectra indicate weak chemical interactions between Ru and the substrate. A less pronounced tendency towards SK growth was observed for Ru deposition on parylene. Deposition of Ru on OSG followed by electroless deposition of Cu resulted in the formation of a shiny copper film that failed the Scotch® tape test. Results indicate failure mainly at the Ru/OSG interface.
- Thermodynamics of the Abraham General Solvation Model: Solubility and Partition Aspects
- Experimental mole fraction solubilities of several carboxylic acids (2-methoxybenzoic acid, 4-methoxybenzoic acid, 4-nitrobenzoic acid, 4-chloro-3-nitrobenzoic acid, 2-chloro-5-nitrobenzoic acid,2-methylbenzoic acid and ibuprofen) and 9-fluorenone, thianthrene and xanthene were measured in a wide range of solvents of varying polarity and hydrogen-bonding characteristics. Results of these measurements were used to calculate gas-to-organic solvent and water-to-organic solvent solubility ratios, which were then substituted into known Abraham process partitioning correlations. The molecular solute descriptors that were obtained as the result of these computations described the measured solubility data to within an average absolute deviation of 0.2 log units. The calculated solute descriptors also enable one to estimate many chemically, biologically and pharmaceutically important properties for the ten solutes studied using published mathematical correlations.