|Publication number||US20090061646 A1|
|Application number||US 12/205,578|
|Publication date||Mar 5, 2009|
|Filing date||Sep 5, 2008|
|Priority date||Sep 5, 2007|
|Also published as||CN101842873A, CN101842873B, EP2186117A1, US8334015, US8409354, US8440259, US20090061083, US20090061644, US20120090545, WO2009032958A1|
|Publication number||12205578, 205578, US 2009/0061646 A1, US 2009/061646 A1, US 20090061646 A1, US 20090061646A1, US 2009061646 A1, US 2009061646A1, US-A1-20090061646, US-A1-2009061646, US2009/0061646A1, US2009/061646A1, US20090061646 A1, US20090061646A1, US2009061646 A1, US2009061646A1|
|Inventors||Tony P. Chiang, Sunil Shanker, Chi-I Lng|
|Original Assignee||Chiang Tony P, Sunil Shanker, Chi-I Lng|
|Export Citation||BiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan|
|Patent Citations (36), Referenced by (12), Classifications (11)|
|External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet|
This application claims the benefit of U.S. Application Ser. No. 60/970,199 filed Sep. 5, 2007, and is a continuation of U.S. application Ser. No. 12/013,729 filed on Jan. 14, 2008, both of which are incorporated by reference in their entirety for all purposes.
This invention relates to semiconductor processing. More particularly, this invention relates to a processing system and a method of site-isolated vapor based processing to facilitate combinatorial film deposition and integration on a substrate.
Chemical Vapor Deposition (CVD) is a vapor based deposition process commonly used in semiconductor manufacturing including but not limited to the formation of dielectric layers, conductive layers, semiconducting layers, liners, barriers, adhesion layers, seed layers, stress layers, and fill layers. CVD is typically a thermally driven process whereby the precursor flux(es) are pre-mixed and coincident to the substrate surface to be deposited upon. CVD requires control of the substrate temperature and the incoming precursor flux(es) to achieve desired film materials properties and thickness uniformity. Derivatives of CVD based processes include but are not limited to Plasma Enhanced Chemical Vapor Deposition (PECVD), High-Density Plasma Chemical Vapor Deposition (HDP-CVD), Sub-Atmospheric Chemical Vapor Deposition (SACVD), laser assisted/induced CVD, and ion assisted/induced CVD.
As device geometries shrink and associated film thickness decrease, there is an increasing need for improved control of the deposited layers. A variant of CVD that enables superior step coverage, materials property, and film thickness control is a sequential deposition technique known as Atomic Layer Deposition (ALD). ALD is a multi-step, self-limiting process that includes the use of at least two precursors or reagents. Generally, a first precursor (or reagent) is introduced into a processing chamber containing a substrate and adsorbs on the surface of the substrate. Excess first precursor is purged and/or pumped away. A second precursor (or reagent) is then introduced into the chamber and reacts with the initially adsorbed layer to form a deposited layer via a deposition reaction. The deposition reaction is self-limiting in that the reaction terminates once the initially adsorbed layer is consumed by the second precursor. Excess second precursor is purged and/or pumped away. The aforementioned steps constitute one deposition or ALD “cycle.” The process is repeated to form the next layer, with the number of cycles determining the total deposited film thickness. Different sets of precursors can also be chosen to form nano-composites comprised of differing materials compositions. Derivatives of ALD include but are not limited to Plasma Enhanced Atomic Layer Deposition (PEALD), radical assisted/enhanced ALD, laser assisted/induced ALD, and ion assisted/induced ALD.
Presently, conventional vapor-based processes such as CVD and ALD are designed to process uniformly across a full wafer. In addition, these CVD and ALD processes need to be integrated into process/device flows. Uniform processing results in fewer data per substrate, longer times to accumulate a wide variety of data and higher costs associated with obtaining such data.
As part of the discovery, optimization and qualification process for new ALD and CVD films, the invention enables one to test i) more than one material, ii) more than one processing condition, iii) more than one sequence of processing conditions, and iv) more than one process sequence integration flow on a single monolithic substrate without the need of consuming the equivalent number of monolithic substrates per material(s), processing condition(s), sequence(s) of processing conditions, sequence(s) of processes, and combinations thereof. This can greatly improve both the speed and reduce the costs associated with the discovery, implementation, optimization, and qualification of new CVD and ALD based material(s), process(es), and process integration sequence(s) required for manufacturing. The invention provides systems, components, and method for processing substrates in a combinatorial manner through the variation of constituent parts of a fluid volume.
The present invention will be readily understood by the following detailed description in conjunction with the accompanying drawings. Like reference numerals designate like structural elements.
The embodiments described herein provide a method and system for evaluating materials, unit processes, and process integration sequences to improve semiconductor manufacturing operations. It will be obvious, however, to one skilled in the art, that the present invention may be practiced without some or all of these specific details. In other instances, well known process operations have not been described in detail in order not to unnecessarily obscure the present invention.
The embodiments described herein enable the application of combinatorial techniques to deposition process sequence integration in order to arrive at a globally optimal sequence of semiconductor manufacturing operations by considering interaction effects between the unit manufacturing operations on multiple regions of a substrate concurrently, Specifically, multiple process conditions may be concurrently employed to effect such unit manufacturing operations, as well as material characteristics of components utilized within the unit manufacturing operations, thereby minimizing the time required to conduct the multiple operations. A global optimum sequence order can also be derived and as part of this technique, the unit processes, unit process parameters and materials used in the unit process operations of the optimum sequence order are also considered.
The embodiments are capable of analyzing a portion or sub-set of the overall deposition process sequence used to manufacture a semiconductor device. The process sequence may be one used in the manufacture of integrated circuits (IC) semiconductor devices, flat panel displays, optoelectronics devices, data storage devices, magneto electronic devices, magneto optic devices, packaged devices, and the like. Once the subset of the process sequence is identified for analysis, combinatorial process sequence integration testing is performed to optimize the materials, unit processes and process sequence for that portion of the overall process identified. During the processing of some embodiments described herein, the deposition may be used to form structures or modify structures already formed on the substrate, which structures are equivalent to the structures formed during manufacturing of substrates for production. For example, structures on semiconductor substrates may include, but would not be limited to, trenches, vias, interconnect lines, capping layers, masking layers, diodes, memory elements, gate stacks, transistors, or any other series of layers or unit processes that create a structure found on semiconductor chips. The material, unit process and process sequence variations may also be used to create layers and/or unique material interfaces without creating all or part of an intended structure, which allows more basic research into properties of the resulting materials as opposed to the structures or devices created through the process steps. While the combinatorial processing varies certain materials, unit processes, or process sequences, the composition or thickness of the layers or structures or the action of the unit process is preferably substantially uniform within each region, but can vary from region to region per the combinatorial experimentation.
The result is a series of regions on the substrate that contain structures or results of unit process sequences that have been uniformly applied within that region and, as applicable, across different regions through the creation of an array of differently processed regions due to the design of experiment. This process uniformity allows comparison of the properties within and across the different regions such that the variations in test results are due to the varied parameter (e.g., materials, unit processes, unit process parameters, or process sequences) and not the lack of process uniformity. However, non-uniform processing of regions can also be used for certain experiments of types of screening. Namely, gradient processing or regional processing having non-uniformity outside of manufacturing specifications may be used in certain situations.
Combinatorial processing is generally most effective when used in a screening protocol that starts with relatively simple screening, sometimes called primary screening, and moves to more complex screening involving structures and/or electrical results, sometimes called secondary screening, and then moves to analysis of the portion of the process sequence in its entirety, sometimes called tertiary screening. The names for the screening levels and the type of processing and analysis are arbitrary and depend more on the specific experimentation being conducted. Thus, the descriptions above are not meant to be limiting in any fashion. As the screening levels progress, materials and process variations are eliminated, and information is fed back to prior stages to further refine the analysis, so that an optimal solution is derived based upon the initial specification and parameters.
In ALD, simple examples of conditions that may be varied, include the precursors, reagents, carrier gases, order of precursors, concentration of precursors/reagents, duration of precursor/reagent pulses, purge fluid species, purge fluid duration, partial pressures, total pressure, flow rates, growth rate per cycle, incubation period, growth rate as a function of substrate type, film thickness, film composition, nano-laminates (e.g., stacking of different ALD film types), precursor source temperatures, substrate temperatures, temperature for saturative adsorption, temperature window for ALD, temperature for thermal decomposition of the precursor(s), plasma power for plasma/ion/radical based ALD, etc. A primary screen may start with varying the precursor and purge fluid pulse durations and flows at increasing substrate temperatures to determine the ALD process window (a zone characterized by self-limiting deposition with weak temperature dependence) for a given film type. A secondary screen may entail stacking two or more such ALD films to vary the effective dielectric constant of a film stack in a simple MIM capacitor structure for example. The output of such a screen may be those candidates which yield the highest effective dielectric constant at the lowest leakage and remain stable through a high temperature (e.g. >500° C.) thermal anneal. The system and methods described below are useful to implement combinatorial experimentation as described above, and are particularly useful for ALD and CVD processing.
Fluid as used in this application refers to liquids, gases, vapors, i.e., a component that flows, and other types of fluids used in ALD and CVD processes and their variants and these terms are used interchangeably throughout this specification. A constituent component may be a liquid at some point in the system, the fluid may be converted to a gas, vapor or other such fluid before entering the processing chamber and being exposed to the substrate.
A heater/lift assembly 46 is disposed within processing chamber 16. Heater/lift assembly 46 includes a support pedestal 48 connected to a support shaft 49. Support pedestal 48 is positioned between shaft 49 and vacuum lid assembly 20. Support pedestal 48 may be formed from any process-compatible material, including aluminum nitride and aluminum oxide (Al2O3 or alumina) and is configured to hold a substrate thereon, e.g., support pedestal 48 may be a vacuum chuck or utilize other conventional techniques such as an electrostatic chuck (ESC) or physical clamping mechanisms. Heater lift assembly 46 is adapted to be controllably moved so as to vary the distance between support pedestal 48 and the showerhead 90 to control the substrate to showerhead spacing. A sensor (not shown) provides information concerning the position of support pedestal 48 within processing chamber 16. Support pedestal 48 can be used to heat the substrate through the use of heating elements (not shown) such as resistive heating elements embedded in the pedestal assembly.
Referring to both
The dimensions of peripheral flow channel 71 are defined to provide a desired conductance of processing fluids therethrough which provide flows of processing fluids over a surface 78 of substrate 79 in a substantially uniform manner and in an axi-symmetric fashion as further described below. To this end, the conductance through pump channel 68 is chosen to be larger than the conductance through peripheral flow channel 71. In one embodiment, the relative conductive of processing fluids through pump channel 68 and peripheral flow channel 71 is, for example, 10:1, wherein the conductance of pump channel 68 is established to be at least ten (10) times greater than the conductance of processing fluids through peripheral flow channel 71. Such a large disparity in the conductance, which includes other ratios (e.g., 5:1, 8:1, 15:1 and other higher and lower ratios as applicable to the chamber and application), serves to facilitate axi-symmetric flow across the surface 78 of substrate 79 as shown by flows A and B moving through processing region 77 and subsequently passing substrate 79 and support pedestal 48 toward pump channel 68.
The fluid supply system of
The components of precursor/reagent subsystems 119 and 131 may differ dependent upon the application and system specifications. In the present embodiment subsystem 119 includes a plurality of manual isolation valves 160, each of which is coupled between one of supplies 120-127 and one of a plurality of two-port valves 161. A plurality of mass flow controllers 162 are coupled between a subset of the plurality 161 of two-port valves and a subset of a plurality of three-port single out line valves 163. An optional needle valve 164 is selectively placed in fluid communication with supply 120, which may contain N2, via one of valves 163, one of valves 161 and one of isolation valves 160, thereby defining an exhaust path. Needle valve 164 selectively places the exhaust path in fluid communication to a chamber vent portion 165. Supply 126 of He may be placed in fluid communication to the backside of the substrate to facilitate thermal coupling of a temperature controlled (e.g., heated) pedestal to the wafer to facilitate uniform substrate temperature control.
The valves in
During time period 207, reagent 122 (e.g., H2O vapor) is made available to quadrant 514, while simultaneously quadrants 515-517 are exposed to purge fluid 121, in the absence of any additional processing fluids. During time period 207, the reagent 122 reacts with the adsorbed layer of precursor 132 on the region of surface 78 of substrate 79 corresponding to quadrant 514 to form a layer of the desired film (e.g., hafnium oxide). In time period 208, the chamber is purged and excess reagent 122 is removed from the processing region 77. Time periods 205 through 208 represent one ALD cycle and can be repeated to achieve the desired film thickness (not shown, e.g., repeated operations during time periods 205-208 prior to moving to the operation for time period 209). It is prudent to note that during time period 205-208, quadrants 515-517 are exposed to purge fluid 121, hence retaining the corresponding regions of substrate 79 in their original state, i.e., the original state being defined as the state of substrate 79 at the start of the process cycle, t=0, which corresponds to the start of time period 205. With reference to time period 209, it is apparent that quadrant 515 is exposed to precursor 133, while quadrants 514, 516-517 are exposed to purge fluid 121 in the absence of any additional processing fluids. This result is achieved by setting the correct logic states for the valve states as indicated in the logic state diagram. One skilled in the art could appreciate how such processing and film growth moves sequentially from quadrant 514 through 517 and returns to 514 for subsequent cycles of processing.
It should be appreciated that time periods 205-208 vs. 209-212 illustrate site isolated combinatorial processing on a substrate whereby the first precursor type is varied in addition to the location of desired processing. Time periods 213-216 illustrates variation in the duration of the second reagent pulse in addition to the location of desired processing. Time periods 217-220 illustrates variation in the type of the second reagent in addition to the location of desired processing. Through careful considerations and proper choice of precursors stored in supplies 132, 133, reagents supplied independently or in combination from supplies 122-127, and purge fluid 120-121, it is possible to modulate the film properties obtained across the four quadrants 514-517. Additionally, film thickness, film sequence, film stacking (e.g., nano-laminates), film composition, co-injection (e.g. of 2 or more source precursors within one region) can be varied in a site-isolated fashion. In addition to site isolated variation, chamber wide process variations can include, but are not limited to, flow rates, chamber pressures, conductance (e.g., via butterfly valve), pulse duration(s), precursor/reagent source temperatures, delivery line temperatures, substrate temperature, showerhead temperature, chamber body temperature, etc. Some of these variations are also possible to conduct in a site isolated fashion, such as source and delivery line temperatures as well as others.
Substrate processing system 10 operates to minimize propagation of a portion of the processing volume produced by processing fluids from injection ports 94 of quadrant 114 into the remaining quadrants 115-117. Therefore, exposure of regions 515-517 of substrate surface 78 to this portion of the processing volume is minimized. Region 514 that corresponds with quadrant 114 is exposed to substantially the entire volume of this portion. Similarly, the propagation of the processing volume produced by processing fluids from a quadrant, e.g., 115-117, into the regions, e.g., 515-517, not corresponding to, i.e., not in superimposition with, that quadrant is minimized. Thus, the region 515, 516 and 517 that corresponds with quadrant 115, 16 and 117, respectively, is exposed to substantially the entire volume of that portion. The ability to direct the flow of fluids from a sector of the showerhead to the corresponding region on the wafer without significant lateral diffusion (i.e., enough diffusion to effect the processing or make comparisons between the processing of the regions unreliable) between the regions is enabled by the showerhead design, system pressure, fluid distribution system, fluid distribution valving, fluid distribution, fluid flow, chamber design, system operation, and other features discussed herein.
For example, one manner in which to ensure that the processing fluids exiting injection ports 94 do not propagate into a region 514-517 of surface 78 that does not correspond to the correct one of quadrants 114-117 is by controlling the propagation of flows of processing fluids through processing chamber 16. Specifically, conditions are established in processing chamber 16 to generate flows of processing fluids along a direction 300 towards the substrate surface 78 and radially symmetric across and around substrate 79 (
In one embodiment, an outer periphery of the substrate is chosen to provide a substantially equal conductance about a periphery of substrate 79 in response to the pumping action generated by pumps 64 and 66. The dimensions of peripheral flow channel 71 are defined to provide a desired conductance of processing fluids therethrough which provide flows of processing fluids over surface 78 of substrate 79 in a substantially uniform and axi-symmetric fashion. The conductance through pump channel 68 is chosen to be larger than the conductance through peripheral flow channel 71. In one embodiment, the relative conductive of processing fluids through pump channel 68 and peripheral flow channel 71 is, for example, 10:1, wherein the conductance of pump channel 68 is established to be at least ten (10) times greater than the conductance of processing fluids through peripheral flow channel 71. Such a large disparity in the conductance, which includes other ratios, serves to facilitate axi-symmetric flow across the surface 78 of substrate 79 as shown by the vector flows in
In addition, in cooperation with the evacuation of processing fluids from processing chamber 16, fluid supply system 69 controls the distribution of the processing fluids so that the total flow through the showerhead assembly is symmetric through the four quadrants although the constituent processing fluids per quadrant may be altered as a function of time in one embodiment. This serves to facilitate axi-symmetric flow. Moreover, the chamber pressure can be controlled to a fixed pressure (e.g., 1 mTorr to 10 Torr) using butterfly valve 67 during such operations. In addition, other chamber wide parameters can be controlled by known techniques.
In addition to enabling combinatorial processing, the system also allows for full wafer or conventional processing of the substrate without a vacuum break. By flowing the same fluid through each of passageways 30-33, each quadrants 114-117, shown in
As shown in
Another alternative embodiment is shown in
Any of the chambers or systems described in
For example, as shown in
This process produces a first layer of a first material in the first region, a first layer of a second material in the second region, a first layer of a third material in the third region and a first layer of a fourth material in the fourth region. It should be noted that one or a subset of the regions may include the gases necessary to deposit a material or prepare the region for deposition in a subsequent step (e.g., only the first region process may result in a layer being formed while the other regions are exposed to purge gas). In one example, at a second angular position, a fifth, sixth, seventh and eighth regions may be exposed to other constituent components of another volume of processing fluid. The rotation of the substrate holder and substrate in this example enables the creation of 8 regions on the substrate using the 4 sectors defined by the showerhead. The fifth region is bounded edges 804 and 805; the sixth region is bounded by edges 805 and 806; the seventh region is bounded by edges 806 and 807; and the eighth region is bounded by edges 804 and 807. Assume that each of the fifth, sixth, seventh and eighth regions are exposed to differing constituent components of the additional volume, which may or may not contain reactive gases, such as precursors or reagents. This process produces different layers and materials in each of the 8 sectors over time since each of the original quadrants is exposed to two different fluids in the second position.
In another embodiment, a first pair of opposing sectors can contain first (e.g., TMAH) and second reagents (e.g., H2O) of an ALD deposition reaction bounded by purge sectors (e.g., Ar) in the remaining pair of opposing sectors. Substrate rotation is then used to deposit a substantially uniform ALD film across the entire substrate. In this embodiment, substrate rotation is used to sequence the gases that a particular region of the substrate sees as a function of time (e.g. TMAH+Ar purge+H20+Ar purge) as opposed to only through gas valving and flow. Flow through each sector is fixed and not diverted as a function of time. This methodology has benefits of uniformity and throughput and enables the creation of a full wafer process within the same combinatorial ALD chamber. Modulation of the rotation speed can be used to control the time per ALD cycle. A rotation speed of 60 revolutions per minute corresponds to an ALD cycle time of 1 second (Reagent 1+Purge+Reagent 2+Purge). Sixty seconds of substrate rotation during processing will equate to 60 ALD cycles.
Upon combinatorial layer 2182 is formed an additional combinatorial layer 2187 having regions 2183, 2184, 2185 and 2186. However, each of regions 2183, 2184, 2185 and 2186 in combinatorial layer 2187 is shifted with respect to regions 2183, 2184, 2185 and 2186 in combinatorial layer 2182. That is, region 2183 of combinatorial layer 2182 is in superimposition with sectors 3001-3004 of surface of conductive layer 2180; whereas, region 2183 of combinatorial layer 2187 is in superimposition with sectors 3002-3005 of surface of conductive layer 2180. This offset results from rotation of substrate 2179 with respect to showerhead 90 after formation of combinatorial layer 2182 and before formation of combinatorial layer 2187. Rotation of substrate 2179 may be undertaken between formation of each combinatorial layer, shown by the relative position of regions 2183, 2184, 2185 and 2186 of combinatorial layers 2188 and 2189. Formed upon combinatorial layer 2189 is a conductive feature 2190 that may be deposited by, for example by site isolated PVD, which may be processed in a conventional (blanket) fashion or in a combinatorial manner. This provides a film stack having multiple regions (e.g., 16) with different materials even though the showerhead only has 4 sectors. Variation (e.g., process parameters, materials, thickness, etc.) of the conductive features 2190 using site isolated combinatorial PVD processing per sector creates additional variations in the final film stack.
With reference to
It should be appreciated that
A simplified schematic diagram illustrating an integrated high productivity combinatorial (HPC) system in accordance with one embodiment of the invention is shown in
For example, Module 904 may be an orientation/degassing module in accordance with one embodiment. Module 906 may be a clean module, either plasma or non-plasma based, in accordance with one embodiment of the invention. Module 908 may be the substrate processing system described herein. Alternatively, Module 908 may contain a plurality of masks, also referred to as processing masks, for use in other modules of the HPC System. Module 910 includes a HPC physical vapor deposition (PVD) module in accordance with one embodiment of the invention, e.g., as described in U.S. application Ser. Nos. 11/672,478, and 11/672,473. In one embodiment, a centralized controller, i.e., computing device 911, may control the processes of the HPC system. With HPC system, a plurality of methods may be employed to deposit material upon a substrate employing combinatorial processes involving PYD, ALD, CVD and pre-post processing steps or other possible alternatives. Enabling the combinatorial processing in one cluster tool provides for better contaminant control, better environment control, more precise experimentation, testing of combinatorial process sequence integration, and better throughput when compared with shuttling the substrate between different tools or locations. For example, the processing shown in
Another embodiment of the present invention, as shown in
It may be determined that the use of a metal gate alone with the High K gate oxide is not compatible as defects are introduced into the structure as evidenced by testing results (e.g., effective work function shifts). Thus, a different process sequence is evaluated where an interfacial cap is disposed between the gate and the gate oxide. In one embodiment, the High K processing and the metal gate processing are fixed, while the interfacial cap processing is varied combinatorially. The substrate is annealed through RTP and the resulting structures are tested to identify optimum materials, unit processes and process sequences with an interfacial cap introduced between the High K material and the gate material. Examples of potential interfacial cap layers include lanthanum oxide, aluminum oxide, magnesium oxide, and scandium oxide. The combinatorial fluid system described herein may be used, for example, for processes including interfacial cap layers. The RTP processing may include rapid thermal anneal.
An optimum process sequence for this example may be developed with the screening approach described herein.
Other alternative embodiments that may be claimed include a device for distributing fluids in a semiconductor processing chamber. The device includes a baffle plate having first and second opposed sides with a plurality of throughways extending between the first and the second opposed sides. The device also includes a faceplate coupled to the baffle plate, the faceplate segmented into sectors of injection ports extending therethrough. The segmented sectors are defined through a fluid separation mechanism extending radially outwardly from an axis of the faceplate. The fluid separation mechanism facilitates sector separation of fluids propagating through the injection ports, wherein the baffle plate and the faceplate define a plenum when coupled together. In one embodiment, the number of the sectors corresponds to a number of the throughways and the fluid separation mechanism includes a body extending from a surface of the faceplate, the body configured to maintain separation of fluids propagating through adjacent sectors. The body may extend away from both the surface of the faceplate and a surface of the baffle plate, alternatively the body extends away from the surface of the faceplate and toward a surface of the baffle plate. The fluid separation mechanism is a set of injection ports disposed between adjacent sectors in one embodiment. The injection ports include first and second fluid passages, with the second fluid passage being disposed within the first fluid passage in one embodiment. The injection ports may include first and second fluid passages, with the first fluid passage having a longitudinal axis and second fluid passage being disposed within the first fluid passage and extending along the longitudinal axis.
In another embodiment, a showerhead for distributing fluids with a processing chamber is provided. The showerhead includes means for independently receiving a plurality of fluid flows and means for distributing the received plurality of fluid flows through segmented sectors. The means for distributing is coupled to the means for independently receiving the plurality of fluid flows. The means for distributing includes means for maintaining separation of the plurality of fluid flows propagating through the means for distributing the received plurality of fluid flows according to the segmented sectors. The number of the segmented sectors can correspond to a number of the plurality of fluid flows. A plenum may be defined by the coupling of the means for independently receiving and the means for distributing. The means for maintaining separation is selected from a group consisting of extending from a surface of the means for distributing, extending away from a surface of the means for distributing and away from a surface of the means for independently receiving, extending away from a surface of the means for distributing and towards a surface of the means for independently receiving, and means for maintaining separation includes means for propagating a fluid between segmented sectors. The means for distributing includes a first means for fluid passage defined within a second means for fluid passage and the first means and the second means share a longitudinal axis, in one embodiment.
In yet another embodiment a method for processing a substrate is provided. The method includes flowing segregated portions of a fluid volume having different constituent components to concurrently expose corresponding segregated sectors of the substrate to a mixture of the constituent components that differ from constituent components to which an adjacent segregated sector is exposed. The method includes depositing a layer on a segregated sector on the substrate, wherein the layer is different from a layer deposited on the adjacent segregated sector and partially rotating the substrate. The flowing and depositing are repeated, wherein a segment corresponding to the segregated sector in a first layer is offset from a corresponding segment in a next layer. The method includes varying a manufacturing parameter between the segment and the corresponding segment and depositing a feature over the next layer through a physical vapor deposition operation, and wherein the deposition of the first layer and the next layer is performed via atomic layer deposition. In one embodiment, the segregated sectors have a first geometry and the feature has a second geometry, e.g., the first geometry is a portion of a circle and the second geometry is circular. Stacked layers having different segment combinations due to the partially rotating between depositing operations are created through the method. In one embodiment, a number of different segment combinations exceeds a number of segregated portions of the fluid volume.
A system for processing a substrate is provided. The system includes means for flowing segregated portions of a fluid volume having different constituent components to concurrently expose corresponding segregated sectors of the substrate to a mixture of the constituent components that differ from constituent components to which an adjacent segregated sector is exposed. Means for depositing a layer on a segregated sector on the substrate, wherein the layer is different from a layer deposited on the adjacent segregated sector are included, as well as means for partially rotating the substrate in order to deposit a next layer over the layer wherein the segment corresponding to the one of the segregated sectors in the layer is offset from a corresponding segment in the next layer. Means for varying a manufacturing parameter between the segment and the corresponding segment and means for depositing a feature over the next layer through a physical vapor deposition operation are included. The segregated sectors may have a first geometry and the feature may have a second geometry. The system includes means for creating stacked layers having different segment combinations due to the partially rotating between depositing operations and wherein a number of different segment combinations exceeds a number of segregated portions of the fluid volume.
A substrate processing system for depositing material on a substrate is provided. The system includes a processing chamber, a fluid distribution system for introducing process fluids into the processing chamber, a pressure control system in fluid communication with the processing chamber, a rotatable support system disposed within the processing chamber, a processor in data communication with the fluid distribution system and the pressure control system, and a memory in data communication with the controller. The memory stores a program to be operated on by the processor to control operation of the substrate processing system to establish conditions in the processing chamber to deposit the material. The program includes a first sub-routine to control operation of the fluid distribution system for flowing segregated portions of a fluid volume having different constituent components to concurrently expose corresponding segregated sectors of a surface of the support system to a mixture of the constituent components that differ from constituent components to which an adjacent segregated sector is exposed. A layer deposited on a segregated sector is different than a layer deposited on the adjacent segregated sector, and the rotatable support system partially rotates between layer stacks so that adjacent layer stacks are defined by different segment combinations. The fluid distribution system includes a fluid distribution device to distribute a precursor fluid and a carrier fluid over the surface, with the fluid distribution device including a faceplate having multiple sets of injection ports extending therethrough. A fluid separation mechanism is disposed to facilitate separation of the differing portions propagating through adjacent sets of the multiple sets of injection ports. The fluid distribution system further includes a fluid distribution device to distribute a precursor fluid and a carrier fluid over the surface, with the fluid distribution device including a faceplate having multiple sets of injection ports extending therethrough, and a body extending from the faceplate to maintain separation of the differing portions propagating through adjacent sets of the multiple sets of injection ports. In one embodiment, the injection ports of one of the multiple sets are arranged along a line extending radially from a central portion the faceplate to a periphery thereof. The fluid distribution system directs process fluids toward a first side of the surface and the pressure control system evacuates the process fluids from the processing chamber from a side of the surface disposed opposite to the first side. A central portion of a substrate is radially symmetrically disposed about an axis and the fluid distribution system to generate a flow of the process fluids so that the fluid volume is radially symmetrically disposed about the axis. The fluid distribution system and the pressure control system operate to create a unidirectional movement of the fluid toward and radially across the surface. The program further includes an additional sub-routine to control operation of the fluid distribution system to introduce a carrier fluid and a precursor fluid into the processing chamber and provide, from the carrier and precursor fluids, an additional fluid volume passing over a surface of the substrate. Differing portions of the additional fluid volume have common additional constituent components so that each of the segregated sectors of the substrate are exposed to a mixture of additional constituent components that are equivalent to the additional constituent components to which an adjacent sector of the substrate is exposed.
In another embodiment, a method of depositing material on a substrate is provided. The method includes flowing process fluids past opposed surfaces of the substrate so as to expose segregated regions of one of the opposed surfaces to a mixture of constituent components of the process fluids that differs from constituent components of the process fluids to which adjacent regions of the one of the opposed surfaces are exposed. Conditions are established in an atmosphere proximate to the surface of at least one of the regions to generate, from the process fluids, the material. The method can include sequentially exposing the segregated regions to deposition and purge fluids. Flows of process fluids are isolated onto adjacent regions using flow velocities and pressure equilibration between portions of the process fluid having different constituent components. In one embodiment, the substrate is rotated between flowings of the process fluids. The flowing may include directing, toward the one of the opposed surfaces, a first flow of a carrier gas and a second flow containing a precursor with respective pressures being substantially equal between the first and second flows to maintain isolation of the process fluids containing different constituent components proximate to the one of the opposed surfaces. In one embodiment, the process fluids are evacuated from a side corresponding to another of the one of the opposed surfaces, wherein the conductance for the evacuating from the side is greater than the conductance over the one of the opposed surfaces and the establishing creates a flow velocity that maintains isolation of flows of the process fluids. In the method, a central portion of the substrate is radially symmetrically disposed about an axis and flowing further includes directing the fluid volume to be radially symmetrically disposed about the axis.
In another embodiment a semiconductor processing system is provided. The system includes a fluid supply containing a plurality of components, including carrier fluids and precursors. The fluid supply is configured to store and deliver different mixtures of the plurality of components. A chamber attached to a central frame about which multiple other chambers are oriented is included. The chamber includes a showerhead in flow communication with the fluid supply. The showerhead is configured to receive fluid flows having different constituent components and maintain a separation of the components. A substrate support and a vacuum inlet coupled to a vacuum mechanism are included. The vacuum inlet has a greater conductance than a conductance proximate to a peripheral region of the substrate support, wherein the fluid supply provides different flows with substantially equal respective pressures and the vacuum mechanism enables fluid flow velocities to maintain the fluid flows separate in a region proximate to the substrate support. In one embodiment, one of the other chambers is a physical vapor deposition (PVD) module that is configured to combinatorially process the substrate. The chamber is in flow communication with a vacuum source for exhausting excess fluid volume of the fluid flows, wherein an inlet to the vacuum source is separate from the showerhead. A conductance of the inlet to the vacuum source is greater that a conductance of a channel defined around a periphery of the substrate support through which excess fluid volume flows to the inlet of the vacuum source in one embodiment. The showerhead includes a fluid separation mechanism extending radially outward across a surface of the showerhead and may be a set of injection ports in one embodiment.
The embodiments include a combinatorial deposition method of forming material upon a substrate. The method includes concurrently providing a plurality of flows of differing fluids to corresponding portions of a showerhead. A fluid volume flows from the plurality of flows of differing fluids, over the substrate to form a flow pattern, wherein isolated regions of the substrate are concurrently exposed to portions of the fluid volume having different constituent parts. Process conditions are maintained suitable for depositing material from one of the plurality of flows during the flowing. A plurality of flows of equivalent fluids to corresponding portions of the showerhead are provided and process conditions are maintained suitable for depositing a material layer from flows of the equivalent fluids over multiple isolated regions of the substrate. The method includes modifying a spatial relationship between the flow pattern of the fluid volume and the isolated regions to change an exposure of at least one of the isolated regions while maintaining the showerhead stationary. The modifying may include one of rotating the substrate or manipulating valves supplying the plurality of flows of differing fluids. The method can include sequentially modifying the spatial relationship thereby creating stacked layers of deposited material over the substrate. In one embodiment, after the modifying, multiple isolated regions are exposed to differing constituent components while purging one of the isolated regions. Within a segment of the stacked layers corresponding to one of the isolated regions, the segment is composed of different material layers due to modification of the spatial relationship. After maintaining process conditions suitable for depositing material from one of the plurality of flows during the flowing, the method includes combinatorially depositing a feature over multiple segments of the stacked layers, wherein the segments spatially correspond to the isolated regions. In one embodiment, a number of isolated regions is greater than a number of flows of differing fluids. In another embodiment, a lateral diffusion region between adjacent isolated regions is maintained proximate to a border between the adjacent isolated regions. Each method operation may be performed in a common chamber without breaking vacuum between depositing material and depositing the material layer.
In another embodiment, a combinatorial deposition system is provided. The system includes means for concurrently providing a plurality of flows of differing fluids to a processing chamber, means for flowing a fluid volume from the plurality of flows of differing fluids, over a substrate to form a flow pattern, the means for flowing concurrently exposing isolated regions of the substrate to portions of the fluid volume having different constituent parts. The system includes means for maintaining process conditions suitable for depositing material from one of the plurality of flows during the flowing and means for depositing a substantially uniform layer of material over multiple isolated regions of the substrate. In one embodiment, means for modifying a spatial relationship between the flow pattern of the fluid volume and the isolated regions to change an exposure of at least one of the isolated regions while maintaining the showerhead stationary, means for rotating the substrate, and means for modifying delivery of the plurality of flows to the processing chamber are included. The means for flowing may be a segmented showerhead, wherein a number of segments is equal to a number of the plurality of flows of differing fluids. Means for evacuating the processing chamber, wherein the means for evacuating the process chamber includes an inlet having a first conductance, the first conductance being greater than a conductance of a channel enabling access into a processing region of the processing chamber are provided. The flow pattern is an axi-symmetrical flow pattern in one embodiment. In another embodiment, the means for flowing provides linear surface flow across the substrate from an edge of the substrate. Pressure control means in fluid communication with the processing chamber and the means for concurrently providing a plurality of flows, the pressure control means configured to generate a flow of the fluid volume in a unidirectional movement toward and radially across the surface of the substrate can be included. The means for concurrently providing a plurality of flows introduces a carrier fluid and a precursor fluid into the processing chamber and provide, from the carrier and precursor fluids, the fluid volume passing over the surface of the substrate with portions of the fluid volume having the different constituent components so that differing regions of the substrate are exposed to a mixture of constituent components that differ from the mixture of constituent components to which an adjacent region of the substrate is exposed. The means for concurrently providing a plurality of flows may be configured to produce a first flow of the carrier fluid and a second flow of the precursor fluid, impinging upon a central portion of the means for flowing, with relative flow rates of the first and second flows being established to equilibrate a pressure of the portions of the fluid volume. The means for flowing includes means for maintaining fluid separation of the plurality of flows, the means for maintaining fluid separation disposed between adjacent sectors of the means for flowing, the means for maintaining fluid separation can be arranged along a line extending radially from a central portion the means for flowing to a periphery thereof. In one embodiment, the means for maintaining fluid separation includes a body extending from the means for flowing to maintain separation of fluids propagating through adjacent sectors of the means for flowing. A central portion of the substrate is radially symmetrically disposed about an axis and wherein the flow pattern is radially symmetrically disposed about the axis in one embodiment. The substantially uniform layer may be deposited without breaking vacuum after depositing material from one of the plurality of flows.
In yet another embodiment, a deposition system is provided. The system includes a fluid delivery system configured to concurrently provide a plurality of flows of fluids to a processing chamber, and a showerhead in flow communication with the fluid delivery system. The showerhead is configured to distribute one of a fluid volume from the plurality of flows of differing fluids to form a flow pattern that concurrently exposes a surface of the system to segregated portions of the fluid volume having different constituent parts or a fluid volume from the plurality of flows of equivalent fluids. The system also includes a controller for alternating between process conditions in the processing chamber suitable for one of depositing material from a segregated portion of the fluid volume to a mixture of the constituent components that differ from constituent components to which adjacent regions are exposed or depositing material from multiple flows of equivalent fluids. A vacuum pump having an inlet into the processing chamber, the inlet having a conductance greater than a conductance of a channel providing access into a processing region of the processing chamber may be included. A rotatable substrate support enabling modification of a spatial relationship between the flow pattern and a surface below the flow pattern through partial rotation of the substrate support is provided in on embodiment. The showerhead may be segmented into a number of segments that is equal to a number of the plurality of flows. Modification of the spatial relationship enables multiple stacked layers to be deposited onto a surface of a substrate disposed on the rotatable substrate support, wherein two of the multiple stacked layers have corresponding isolated regions partially offset from each other due to the modification of the spatial relationship between the two of the multiple stacked layers. The fluid delivery system includes a reagent subsystem and a precursor subsystem, the fluid delivery system further includes a manifolding system enabling spatial modification of the fluid volume relative to a surface over which the fluid volume flows.
In summary, the embodiments described above enable rapid and efficient screening of materials, unit processes, and process sequences for semiconductor manufacturing operations. Various layers may be deposited onto a surface of a substrate combinatorially within the same plane, on top of each other or some combination of the two, through the atomic layer deposition tool described herein. In one embodiment, the combinatorial process sequencing takes a substrate out of the conventional process flow, and introduces variation of structures or devices on a substrate in an unconventional manner, i.e., combinatorially. However, actual structures or devices are formed for analysis. That is, the layer, device element, trench, via, etc., are equivalent to a layer, device element, trench, via etc. defined through a conventional process. The embodiments described herein can be incorporated with any semiconductor manufacturing operation or other associated technology, such as process operations for flat panel displays, optoelectronics devices, data storage devices, magneto electronic devices, magneto optic devices, packaged devices, and the like.
Although the invention has been described in terms of specific embodiments, one skilled in the art will recognize that various modifications may be made that are within the scope of the present invention. For example, although four quadrants are shown, any number of quadrants may be provided, depending upon the number of differing process fluids employed to deposit material. Additionally, it is possible to provide the processing volume with a homogenous mixture of constituent components so that the processing chamber may function as a standard processing chamber for either ALD or CVD recipes. Therefore, the scope of the invention should not be limited to the foregoing description. Rather, the scope of the invention should be determined based upon the claims recited herein, including the full scope of equivalents thereof.
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|U.S. Classification||438/763, 118/715, 257/E21.24|
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