Study of Interactions Between Diffusion Barrier Layers and Low-k Dielectric Materials for Copper/Low-k Integration

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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 ... continued below

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Tong, Jinhong December 2003.

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  • Tong, Jinhong

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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.

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  • December 2003

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  • Feb. 15, 2008, 3:02 p.m.

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  • March 17, 2017, 11:39 a.m.

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Tong, Jinhong. Study of Interactions Between Diffusion Barrier Layers and Low-k Dielectric Materials for Copper/Low-k Integration, dissertation, December 2003; Denton, Texas. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc4384/: accessed December 17, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; .