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Publication numberUS20050179112 A1
Publication typeApplication
Application numberUS 11/035,392
Publication dateAug 18, 2005
Filing dateJan 12, 2005
Priority dateJun 3, 2003
Also published asCN1574277A, CN100394578C, US6869860, US20040248374
Publication number035392, 11035392, US 2005/0179112 A1, US 2005/179112 A1, US 20050179112 A1, US 20050179112A1, US 2005179112 A1, US 2005179112A1, US-A1-20050179112, US-A1-2005179112, US2005/0179112A1, US2005/179112A1, US20050179112 A1, US20050179112A1, US2005179112 A1, US2005179112A1
InventorsMichael Belyansky, Rama Divakaruni, Laertis Economikos, Rajarao Jammy, Kenneth Settlemyer, Padraic Shafer
Original AssigneeInternational Business Machines Corporation
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Filling high aspect ratio isolation structures with polysilazane based material
US 20050179112 A1
Abstract
Isolation trenches and capacitor trenches containing vertical FETs (or any prior levels p-n junctions or dissimilar material interfaces) having an aspect ratio up to 60 are filled with a process comprising: applying a spin-on material based on silazane and having a low molecular weight; pre-baking the applied material in an oxygen ambient at a temperature below about 450 deg C.; converting the stress in the material by heating at an intermediate temperature between 450 deg C. and 800 deg C. in an H20 ambient; and heating again at an elevated temperature in an O2 ambient, resulting in a material that is stable up to 1000 deg C., has a compressive stress that may be tuned by variation of the process parameters, has an etch rate comparable to oxide dielectric formed by HDP techniques, and is durable enough to withstand CMP polishing.
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Claims(32)
1. A method of forming an integrated circuit containing a set of thermally sensitive circuit elements having a thermal budget associated therewith and a set of isolation trenches comprising the steps of:
providing a silicon substrate;
forming at least one circuit element having a thermal budget prior to forming the isolation structure;
etching said set of trenches in said silicon substrate;
filling said set of trenches with a spin on trench dielectric material containing silazane;
heating said substrate at a temperature of less than about 450 deg C.;
converting the stress in said trench dielectric material from tensile stress to compressive stress by heating in an ambient containing H2O at a temperature between about 450 deg C. and about 900 deg C.;
annealing said substrate by heating in an ambient containing O2 at a temperature above 800 deg C.; and
completing said integrated circuit.
2. A method according to claim 1, in which the time of the stress conversion step and the time of the anneal step are related such that the thermal budget of the thermally sensitive component is not exceeded.
3. A method according to claim 1, in which: said step of stress conversion and said step of annealing are related such that the resulting material has compressive stress in the range of 0.1 to 2 Gdynes/cm2 and has a WERR of less than about 2.
4. A method according to claim 2, in which:
said step of stress conversion and said step of annealing are related such that the resulting material has compressive stress in the range of 0.1 to 2 Gdynes/cm2 and has a WERR of less than about 2.
5. A method according to claim 2, in which:
the step of heating said substrate in an ambient containing ) O2 is performed for an adjustment time such that the WERR of the final material is made substantially equal to a design value.
6. A method according to claim 3, in which:
the step of heating said substrate in an ambient containing O2 is performed for an adjustment time such that the WERR of the final material is made substantially equal to a design value.
7. A method according to claim 4, in which:
the step of heating said substrate in an ambient containing O2 is performed for an adjustment time such that the WERR of the final material is made substantially equal to a design value.
8. A method according to claim 1, in which: the trench has an aspect ratio of greater than 6;
the trench dielectric material is planarized by CMP after the step of annealing in an O2 ambient; and
an anneal in an ambient containing water vapor is performed after the step of planarizing for a time sufficient to convert SióN bonds to SióO bonds in trench dielectric material at the bottom of the trench.
9. A method according to claim 8, in which the time of the stress conversion step and the time of the anneal step are related such that the thermal budget of the thermally sensitive component is not exceeded.
10. A method according to claim 8, in which:
said step of stress conversion and said step of annealing are related such that the resulting material has compressive stress in the range of 0.1 to 2 Gdynes/cm2 and has a WERR of less than about 2.
11. A method according to claim 9, in which:
said step of stress conversion and said step of annealing are related such that the resulting material has compressive stress in the range of 0.1 to 2 Gdynes/cm2 and has a WERR of less than about 2.
12. A method according to claim 9, in which:
the step of heating said substrate in an ambient containing O2 is performed for an adjustment time such that the WERR of the final material is made substantially equal to a design value.
13. A method according to claim 10, in which:
the step of heating said substrate in an ambient containing O2 is performed for an adjustment time such that the WERR of the final material is made substantially equal to a design value.
14. A method according to claim 11, in which:
the step of heating said substrate in an ambient containing O2 is performed for an adjustment time such that the WERR of the final material is made substantially equal to a design value.
15. A method of forming an integrated circuit containing a set of circuit elements and a set of isolation trenches comprising the steps of:
providing a silicon substrate;
etching said set of trenches in said silicon substrate;
filling said set of trenches with a spin on trench dielectric material containing silazane; heating said substrate at a temperature of less than about 450 deg C.;
converting the stress in said trench dielectric material from tensile stress to compressive stress by heating in an ambient containing H2O at a temperature between about 450 deg C. and about 900 deg C.;
annealing said substrate by heating in an ambient containing O2 at a temperature above 800 deg C.; and
completing said integrated circuit.
16. A method according to claim 15, in which:
said step of stress conversion and said step of annealing are related such that the resulting material has compressive stress in the range of 0.1+2 Gdynes/cm2 and has a WERR of less than about 2.
17. A method according to claim 16, in which:
the step of heating said substrate in an ambient containing O2 is performed for an adjustment time such that the WERR of the final material is no greater than a design value.
18. A method according to claim 17, in which:
the step of heating said substrate in an ambient containing O2 is performed for an adjustment time such that the WERR of the final material is made substantially equal to a design value.
19. A method of forming an integrated circuit containing a set of thermally sensitive vertical transistor DRAM cells having a thermal budget associated therewith and a set of isolation trenches, comprising the steps of:
providing a silicon substrate;
forming at least one vertical transistor DRAM cell having a thermal budget prior to forming the isolation structure;
etching said set of trenches in said silicon substrate;
filling said set of trenches with a spin on trench dielectric material containing silazane; heating said substrate at a temperature of less than about 450 deg C.;
converting the stress in said trench dielectric material from tensile stress to compressive stress by heating in an ambient containing H2O at a temperature between about 450 deg C. and about 900 deg C.;
annealing said substrate by heating in an ambient containing O2 at a temperature above 800 deg C.; and
completing said integrated circuit.
20. A method according to claim 19, in which the time of the stress conversion step and the time of the anneal step are related such that the thermal budget of the vertical transistor DRAM cell is not exceeded.
21. A method according to claim 19, in which:
said step of stress conversion and said step of annealing are related such that the resulting material has compressive stress in the range of 0.1 to 2 Gdynes/cm2 and has a WERR of less than about 2.
22. A method according to claim 20, in which:
said step of stress conversion and said step of annealing are related such that the resulting material has compressive stress in the range of 0.1 to 2 Gdynes/cm2 and has a WERR of less than about 2.
23. A method according to claim 20, in which:
the step of heating said substrate in an ambient containing O2 is performed for an adjustment time such that the WERR of the final material is made substantially equal to a design value.
24. A method according to claim 21, in which: the step of heating said substrate in an ambient containing O2 is performed for an adjustment time such that the WERR of the final material is made substantially equal to a design value.
25. A method according to claim 22, in which:
the step of heating said substrate in an ambient containing O2 is performed for an adjustment time such that the WERR of the final material is made substantially equal to a design value.
26. An integrated circuit containing a set of thermally sensitive circuit elements having a thermal budget associated therewith and a set of isolation trenches in a silicon substrate, in which:
said set of trenches have an aspect ratio of at least four and have been filled with a spin on trench dielectric material containing silazane;
said substrate has been heated at a temperature of less than about 450 deg C.; the stress in said trench dielectric material is compressive stress that was converted from tensile stress to compressive stress by heating in an ambient containing H2O at a temperature between about 450 deg C. and about 900 deg C.; and
said substrate has been annealed by heating in an ambient containing O2 at a temperature above 800 deg C. until SióN bonds at the bottom of said trench are substantially converted to SióO bonds, in which the time of the stress conversion step and the time of the anneal step are related such that the thermal budget of the thermally sensitive component is not exceeded; and
said step of stress conversion and said step of annealing are related such that the resulting material has compressive stress in the range of 0.1 to 2 Gdynes/cm2, whereby the operation of transistors adjacent to said set of trenches is not affected and has a WERR of less than about 2.
27. A circuit according to claim 26, in which the time of the stress conversion step and the time of the anneal step were related such that the thermal budget of the thermally sensitive component was not exceeded.
28. A circuit according to claim 26, in which:
said step of stress conversion and said step of annealing were related such that the resulting material has compressive stress in the range of 0.1 to 2 Gdynes/cm2 and has a WERR of less than about 2.
29. A circuit according to claim 26, in which:
a subset of isolation trenches surround transistor areas containing a transistor; and
the time and temperature of the stress conversion step is such that the stress in the dielectric trench material is not greater than a design limit value.
30. A circuit according to claim 29, in which:
the time and temperature of the stress conversion step is such that the stress in the dielectric trench material is substantially equal to a design value.
31. A circuit according to claim 26, in which:
the time and temperature of the stress conversion step and the annealing steps are such that the stress in the dielectric trench material is substantially equal to that of oxide deposited by the HDP technique.
32. A circuit according to claim 29, in which:
the time and temperature of the stress conversion step and the annealing steps are such that the stress in the dielectric trench material is substantially equal to that of oxide deposited by the HDP technique.
Description
BACKGROUND OF INVENTION

The field of the invention is that of filling high aspect ratio trenches in integrated circuit processing.

As ground rule dimensions shrink in integrated circuits, the problem of filling high aspect ratio trenches increases, in particular for isolation trenches used in the shallow trench isolation process, STI, that is commonly used in advanced processing.

The industry-standard filling material and process has been silicon oxide, SiO2, deposited with the high density plasma, HDP, technique. This method has been widely adopted because it produces a high quality material that has good filling properties. Designers of integrated circuits have adapted their structural and material specifications to this process and material.

Since silicon is piezo-electric, the properties of field effect transistors, FETs, are affected by the stress on the transistor converts the stress in the material from tensile to compressive.

Another aspect of the invention is a stress conversion step followed by an anneal in a dry ambient.

Another aspect of the invention is a first heating step in a steam ambient followed by the anneal in a dry ambient.

Another aspect of the invention is the ability to relate total allowed device temperature budget and the annealing step to tune the stress and wet etch rate of the final material.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF DRAWINGS

FIGS. 1A-1C illustrate a portion of a substrate in the course of the invention.

FIGS. 2A, 2B illustrate an optional step of applying an HDP cap layer.

FIG. 3 illustrates the filling of an aperture with a reentrant profile.

FIG. 4 shows a graph of material stress resulting from different treatments.

FIG. 5 shows a graph of relative etch rates resulting from different treatments.

FIG. 6 shows a graph of relative etch rates resulting from different treatments.

FIG. 7 shows a graph of material composition resulting from different treatments.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION

The basic sequence in an SOD application is illustrated in FIG. 1, in which a silicon substrate 10 having a pad nitride/oxide 20 has a set of apertures that have been etched in it by any convenient process, e.g. a reactive ion etch. Two sizes of apertures are shown to illustrate that actual wafers will have a variety of values for the spacing between apertures and the width of the apertures, as well as different depths. The variation may result from fluctuations in a single etching process that may depend, for example, on the pattern density or it may result from the simultaneous filling of apertures formed in two different processes.

On the right of FIG. 1A, aperture 34 has a width 48 and a depth 46, giving an aspect ratio of 46/48. Apertures 32 have a width 44 and a depth 42, giving an aspect ratio 42/44. It is evident that the aspect ratio of the apertures 32 will be higher than that of aperture 34, so that the process in question will need to accommodate a range of aspect ratios.

In the course of the process, a trench dielectric material filling substance, referred to as a spin-on dielectric (SOD) or spin-on glass (SOG) will be applied to the wafer, which is rotated to spread the material quite uniformly over the surface. The material, which has a suitably low viscosity, will penetrate into the various apertures and overfill, with a top surface 52 above the top surface of pad 20. The result is shown in FIG. 1B.

The wafer is then planarized by CMP or by an etchback step to remove the excess overfill material, as shown in FIG. 1C.

FIG. 1C also shows an extra thickness of oxide 57 formed along the sides of the apertures by annealing the material in an oxidizing ambient. A conventional step of annealing in an ambient containing water vapor converts the Nitrogen and Hydrogen in the silazane to ammonia and molecular Hydrogen that escapes from the material, leaving a residue that is largely silicon oxide. The presence of oxygen in the ambient assists in converting SióN bonds to SióO bonds. The properties of the final material will depend on the degree to which this conversion has been accomplished.

FIGS. 2A and 2B illustrate an optional aspect of the invention, in which the silazane fill 54 is recessed by any conventional etch and a cap layer 62 of HDP is deposited by standard techniques and planarized with CMP.

Those skilled in the art will appreciate that the process will be more consistent and the results better if the stress of the silazane layer 54 is close to that of HDP layer 62.

Spin-on materials have the well known property that they fill various aperture profiles that a process such as chemical vapor deposition cannot fill. Referring now to FIG. 3, there is illustrated an aperture 310 having a reentrant profile, meaning that there is at least one level where the transverse dimension B is less than the corresponding transverse dimension A at or near the top of the aperture. This occurs by design in the case of a trench capacitor or by accident when a divot has been formed on a wall that is intended to be smooth.

FIG. 3C illustrates the result of a CVD application, with a void 325 that has been formed in the body of material 320′. In contrast, FIG. 3B shows the result of a spin-on application that fills the aperture uniformly.

It is well known in the art that the industry standard material for isolation trenches, referred to as shallow trench isolation, or STI, is High Density Plasma-assisted oxide (HDP oxide), which will not fill apertures uniformly when the aspect ratio is more than about 4 (assuming a vertical trench sidewall profile).

In modern processing, there is very strong pressure to increase the density of features on a chip, so that the aspect ratio is constantly increasing. Process engineers are now working on filling trenches with aspect ratios in the range of about 10 and planning on filling trenches with much higher aspect ratios.

Various complex and expensive schemes are in use to fill high aspect ratio trenches that involve depositing a portion of the total material, cleaning out the upper portion of the aperture so that new material is not blocked, then filling a second portion, etc.

Process engineers go to this effort in spite of the much better filling properties of spin-on materials because no spin-on material is currently acceptable. In the case of isolation trenches, it is not enough that the filled trench insulateói.e. not conduct current. Process integration requires that the steps in the process and the properties of the resulting material must be consistent with the rest of the process and structure.

Since the processes in use at the present time have been developed to be consistent with the properties of HDP oxide, it would require a great deal of effort to alter those current processes. It would be highly advantageous if a spin-on process could be developed that would emulate the material properties of the HDP material.

The inventors have realized that it is possible to tune the stress, composition and wet etch resistance of a spin-on material to be similar to those of HDP oxide.

Poly-silazane processed according to the manufacturer's recommendations produces a final material that has properties very different from those of HDP, having poor etch resistance, tensile stress and low density.

According to the invention, the sequence of processing steps is:

Spin-on silazane having a molecular weight in the range of 2000-4000 dissolved in a solvent such as dibutyl ether;

Pre-bake in O2 ambient (400-700 Torr) at a temperature in the range 100-450 deg C. for a period of 20-120 min;

Perform a first anneal in water vapor at a temperature in the range 450-800 deg C. for a period of 20-120 min;

In case temperature budget of prior levels allows: Perform a second anneal in an oxygen ambient without water vapor (400-700 Torr) at a temperature between 800-1200 deg C. for a period of 20 -120 min.

Planarize the resulting film by CMP.

For deep STI trenches (aspect ratio>6), an additional step is an extra anneal in water vapor at a temperature in the range 450-800 deg C. for a period of 20-120 min after CMP to ensure that material at the bottom of the trench is oxidized and converted from SióN bonding to SióO bonding.

It is an advantageous feature of the invention that the parameters of the final product can be varied by varying the processing parameters. Illustratively, the final material is high quality oxide with low impurity contamination; has a wet etch removal ratio (WERR) at 900 deg C. of less than 1.5; has compressive film stress in the range of 0.1 to 2 Gdyne/cm2; can be planarized by CMP with a standard slurry; is thermally stable at temperatures greater than 1000 deg C.; and has thickness uniformity (<1% sigma) superior to HDP oxide.

Referring now to FIG. 4, the graph shows the material stress in a silazane film annealed with steam and with oxygen ambients. Point 410 shows a typical value for HDP oxide. Curve 420 shows the result of a steam anneal between 700 and 900 deg C. As can be seen, the points at 800 deg C. and 900 deg C. are quite close to HDP, while the result of films annealed in an oxygen ambient (curve 430) have a tensile stress.

FIG. 5 shows corresponding curves for the wet etch rate ratio i.e. the ratio of the etch rate of the film in question to the rate of thermal oxide. The etch material is buffered hydrofluoric acid (BHF). The results, on curve 520, of the steam anneal at 800 and 900 deg C. are again very similar to the results of HDP oxide, point 510, while the results of the oxygen anneal, curve 530, are much higher (having less etch resistance).

FIG. 6 shows corresponding results for the refractive index of the resulting oxide. The refractive index is a measure of material density as well as silicon to oxygen stoichometric ratio.

Again, curve 620 (the steam anneal) is closer to point 610, typical of HDP oxide, while the points on curve 630, the oxygen anneal, are considerably different.

FIG. 7 shows the composition of films after anneals at two different temperatures (in steam). The residual concentration of C (curve C), N (curve NSi) and hydrogen (Curve H) are much higher at 700 deg C. than at 1000 deg C.

While very high temperature steam anneal (1000 C) produces the film with low impurity levels it is obviously can not be used if prior levels junctions have lower temperature budget restrictions. In the case of a vertical transistor, the STI is often done after the transistor has been formed and for example any prolonged (>10 min) anneal above 900 C is prohibited assuming 100 nm vertical DRAM groundrule.

Another well known issue with high temperature steam oxidation of silicon is the formation of defects which decrease activation energy for dopant diffusion (such as B, P, As, etc) and subsequent increase in their diffusion coefficients (so called oxygen enhanced diffusion (OED)). This effect in turn causes even bigger unwanted changes in prior p-n junction profiles.

It has been also found, that steam oxidation above a temperature of 800 deg C. produces excessive oxidation of the silicon in the wafer (either bulk, epitaxial or SOI) that can degrade the parameters of the transistor that will be formed in the active area. Thick oxide film (>300 A) grows on an STI sidewall (especially the top corner portion) and creates stress in adjacent active areas as well as increases the number of defects. Defects are easily formed in the top STI corner, after pad SiN strip and subsequent etch and anneal processing steps. The stress in the active areas may vary according to the circuit design. What is beneficially provided by the present invention is that the new trench material does not change the stress that the transistor was designed for.

Once a silazane film is subjected to a first 800 C steam anneal it is beneficial to proceed with a second anneal in oxygen at temperatures>800 C. Such an anneal further decreases the wet etch rate ratio (to about 1.1 of that of thermal oxide) and keeps film stress compressive within the range of 0.5-2 Gdyne/cm2.

The properties of the final film can be adjusted or tuned by varying the time of the steam anneal and of the oxygen anneal.

While the invention has been described in terms of a single preferred embodiment, those skilled in the art will recognize that the invention can be practiced in various versions within the spirit and scope of the following claims.

Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US7067890 *Sep 29, 2004Jun 27, 2006Agere Systems Inc.Thick oxide region in a semiconductor device
US7276417 *Dec 28, 2005Oct 2, 2007Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company, Ltd.Hybrid STI stressor with selective re-oxidation anneal
US7521378 *Jul 1, 2004Apr 21, 2009Micron Technology, Inc.Low temperature process for polysilazane oxidation/densification
US7557420 *Dec 29, 2005Jul 7, 2009Micron Technology, Inc.Low temperature process for polysilazane oxidation/densification
US7821077Jun 29, 2005Oct 26, 2010Fujitsu Semiconductor LimitedSemiconductor device
US7838961 *May 17, 2007Nov 23, 2010Nec Electronics CorporationMethod of manufacturing semiconductor device
US8012847 *Apr 1, 2005Sep 6, 2011Micron Technology, Inc.Methods of forming trench isolation in the fabrication of integrated circuitry and methods of fabricating integrated circuitry
US8022500 *Jun 30, 2009Sep 20, 2011Hynix Semiconductor Inc.Semiconductor device having a high aspect ratio isolation trench
US8202784Aug 16, 2011Jun 19, 2012Hynix Semiconductor Inc.Semiconductor device having a high aspect ratio isolation trench and method for manufacturing the same
US8232180Sep 20, 2010Jul 31, 2012Fujitsu Semiconductor LimitedManufacturing method of semiconductor device comprising active region divided by STI element isolation structure
US8575040Jul 6, 2009Nov 5, 2013Micron Technology, Inc.Low temperature process for polysilazane oxidation/densification
Classifications
U.S. Classification257/510, 257/E21.548
International ClassificationH01L27/108, H01L21/762, H01L21/76, H01L21/8242
Cooperative ClassificationH01L21/76229
European ClassificationH01L21/762C4