Cross-sectional elastic imaging and mechanical defect detection in low-k dielectrics in integrated circuit interconnect test structures

L. Muthuswami*, E. S. Moyer, Z. Li, E. Thompson, Kathleen Dunn, A. Victoria, G. S. Shekhawat, R. E. Geer

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review

Abstract

A novel cross-sectional characterization technique for nanomechanical profiling of low-k integrated circuit interconnect structures has been developed based on ultrasonic force microscopy. So-called CS-UFM has been demonstrated on silicon-based, spin-on dielectrics (SOD) used for gap-fill in 150 nm trenches in a SiO2 test structure. The SiO2 trench walls were coated with a thin (∼24 nm) PECVD Si3N4 layer. CS-UFM imaging clearly differentiated the SOD, SiO2 and Si3N4 on the basis of elastic modulus. Calibration of this variation was carried out to determine the relative moduli of the three materials. Localized variations in the elastic uniformity of the SOD were also observed in the narrowest trench features and tentatively identified as mechanical defects. These defect regions possessed no topographic signature and are presumed to result from compositional variations due to incomplete SOD curing.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)557-562
Number of pages6
JournalMaterials Research Society Symposium - Proceedings
Volume716
StatePublished - Dec 1 2002
EventSilicon Materials - Processing, Characterization and Reliability - San Francisco, CA, United States
Duration: Apr 1 2002Apr 5 2002

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Materials Science(all)
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering

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