Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

Chemical Mechanical Polishing of Ruthenium, Cobalt, and Black Diamond Films
by Peethala, Brown Cornelius, Ph.D., Clarkson University, 2012, 148; 3491072
Abstract (Summary)

Ta/TaN bilayer serves as the diffusion barrier as well as the adhesion promoter between Cu and the dielectric in 32 nm technology devices. A key concern of future technology devices (<32 nm) for Cu interconnects is the extendibility of TaN/Ta/Cu-seed to sustain the diffusion barrier performance without forming voids and meeting the requirements of low resistivity. These are very challenging requirements for the Ta/TaN bilayer at a thickness of < 5 nm.<p> Hence, ruthenium (Ru) and cobalt (Co), among these, are being considered for replacing Ta/TaN as barrier materials for Cu interconnects in future technology devices. Both are very attractive for reasons such as the capability of direct electroplating of Cu, lower resistivity and for a single layer (vs. a bilayer of Ta/TaN) to act as a barrier. During patterning, they need to be planarized using conventional chemical mechanical polishing (CMP) to achieve a planar surface. However, CMP of these new barrier materials requires novel slurry compositions that provide adequate selectivity towards Cu and dielectric films, and minimize galvanic corrosion. Apart from the application as a barrier, Ru also has been proposed as a lower electrode material in metal-insulator-metal capacitors where high (> 50 nm/min) Ru removal rates (RRs) are required and as a stop layer in magnetic recording head fabrication where low (< 1 nm/min) Ru RRs are desired.

<p> A Ru removal rate of ∼60 nm/min was achieved with a colloidal silica-based slurry at pH 9 using potassium periodate (KIO4) as the oxidizer. At this pH, toxic RuO4 does not form eliminating a major challenge in Ru CMP. This removal rate was obtained by increasing the solubility of KIO4 by adding potassium hydroxide (KOH). It was also determined that increased the ionic strength is not responsible for the observed increase in Ru removal rate. Benzotirazole (BTA) and ascorbic acid were added to the slurry to reduce the open circuit potential (Eoc) difference between Cu and Ru to ∼20 mV from about 550 mV in the absence of additives. A removal mechanism with KIO4 as the oxidizing agent is proposed based on the formation of several ruthenium oxides, some of which formed residues on the polishing pad below a pH of ∼7.

Next, a colloidal silica-based slurry with hydrogen peroxide (H 2O2) as the oxidizer (1 wt%), and arginine (0.5 wt%) as the complexing agent was developed to polish Co at pH 10. The Eoc between Cu and Co at the above conditions was reduced to ∼20 mV compared to ∼250 mV in the absence of additives, suggestive of reduced galvanic corrosion during the Co polishing. The slurry also has the advantages of good post-polish surface quality at pH 10, and no dissolution rate. BTA at a concentration of 5mM in this slurry inhibited Cu dissolution rates and yielded a Cu/Co RR ratio of ∼0.8:1 while the open potential difference between Cu and Co was further reduced to ∼10 mV. The role of H2O2, complexing agent (arginine), silica abrasives, and Co removal mechanism during polishing is discussed.

Also, during the barrier CMP, a part of the underlying low-k (SiCOH) material has to be polished to remove any modified surface film. Black Diamond (BD) is a SiCOH type material with a dielectric constant of ∼2.9 and here, polishing of BD was investigated in order to understand the polishing behavior of SiCOH-based materials using the barrier slurries. The slurries that were developed for polishing Co and Ru in this work and Ta/TaN (earlier) were investigated for polishing the Black Diamond (BD) films. Here, it was found that ionic salts play a major role in enhancing the BD RRs to ∼65 nm/min compared to no removal rates in the absence of additives. A removal mechanism in the presence of ionic salts is proposed.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Suryadevara, Babu V.
Commitee: Krishnan, Sitaraman, Rasmussen, Don H., Roy, Dipankar, Shipp, Devon A.
School: Clarkson University
Department: Chemical Engineering
School Location: United States -- New York
Source: DAI-B 73/05, Dissertation Abstracts International
Subjects: Chemical engineering, Materials science
Keywords: Black diamond films, Chemical mechanical polishing, Cobalt, Galvanic corrosion, Polishing, Ruthenium
Publication Number: 3491072
ISBN: 9781267127365
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