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Further optimization of plasma nitridation of ultra-thin oxides for 65-nm node MOSFETS

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P.A. Kraus, T.C. Chua, K. Z. Ahmed, J. Campbell, F. Nouri & J. Cruse, Applied Materials, Sunnyvale, CA, USA, A. Rothschild, A. Veloso, S. Mertens & M. Schaekers, IMEC, Leuven, Belgium, F.N. Cubaynes, Philips Research Leuven, Leuven, Belgium, L. Date & R. Schreutelkamp, Applied Materials Belgium, Leuven, Belgium & T. M. Bauer, Sandia National Laboratories, Albuquerque, NM, USA

ABSTRACT

Optimization of MOSFET gate dielectric nitridation is performed via N2 plasma characterization. The energy scales of the electrons and ions are measured in inductively coupled pulsed radio frequency nitrogen plasmas. Controlling both the instantaneous and timeaveraged energy scales of the electrons and ions is found to be possible through modifications to the pulsed-rf plasma apparatus. These modifications result in up to a 15% and 7% improvement in nMOS and pMOS low-field mobility, respectively, at fixed gate leakage current when compared to results with the standard apparatus. The results indicate a means to extend silicon oxynitride as a useful gate dielectric for the 65-nm node.

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