The Implementation of the Surface Charging Effects in Three-Dimensional Simulations of SiO2 Etching Profile Evolution

DOI: 10.4236/eng.2014.61001   PDF   HTML     3,071 Downloads   4,657 Views   Citations


Refined control of etched profile in microelectronic devices during plasma etching process is one of the most important tasks of front-end and back-end microelectronic devices manufacturing technologies. A comprehensive simulation of etching profile evolution requires knowledge of the etching rates at all the points of the profile surface during the etching process. Electrons do not contribute directly to the material removal, but they are the source, together with positive ions, of the profile charging that has many negative consequences on the final outcome of the process especially in the case of insulating material etching. The ability to simulate feature charging was added to the 3D level set profile evolution simulator described earlier. The ion and electron fluxes were computed along the feature using Monte Carlo method. The surface potential profiles and electric field for the entire feature were generated by solving Laplace equation using finite elements method. Calculations were performed in the case of simplified model of Ar+/CF4 non-equilibrium plasma etching of SiO2.

Share and Cite:

B. Radjenović and M. Radmilović-Radjenović, "The Implementation of the Surface Charging Effects in Three-Dimensional Simulations of SiO2 Etching Profile Evolution," Engineering, Vol. 6 No. 1, 2014, pp. 1-6. doi: 10.4236/eng.2014.61001.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


[1] J. Sethian, “Level Set Methods and Fast arching Methods: Evolving Interfaces in Computational Geometry, Fluid Mechanics, Computer Vision and Materials Sciences,” Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, 1998.
[2] S. Osher and R. Fedkiw, “Level Set Method and Dynamic Implicit Surfaces,” Springer, 2002.
[3] K. Hashimoto, “Charge Damage Caused by Electron Shading Effect,” Japanese Journal of Applied Physics, Vol. 33, 1994, pp. 6013-6018.
[4] H. Ohtake and S. Samukawa, “Charging-Damage-Free and Precise Dielectric Etching in Pulsed C2F4/CF3I Plasma,” Journal of Vacuum Science & Technology, Vol. B20, 2002, pp. 1026-1031.
[5] M. Radmilovic-Radjenovic, B. Radjenovic and M. Savic, “The Surface Charging Effects in Three-Dimensional Simulation of the Profiles of Plasma-Etched Nanostructures,” International Journal of Numerical Modelling, Vol. 24, No. 6, 2011, pp. 535-544.
[6] B. Radjenovic, J. K. Lee and M. Radmilovic-Radjenovic, “Sparse Field Level Set Method for Non-Convex Hamiltonians in 3D Plasma Etching Profile Simulations,” Computer Physics Communications, Vol. 174, No. 2, 2006, pp. 127-132.
[7] G. Hwang and K. Giapis, “On the Origin of the Notching Effect during Etching in Uniform High Density Plasmas,” Journal of Vacuum Science and Technology, Vol. B15, 1997, pp. 70-87.
[8] A. Mahorowala and H. Sawin, “Etching of Polysilicon in Inductively Coupled Cl2 and HBr Discharges. IV. Calculation of Feature Charging in Profile Evolution,” Journal of Vacuum Science and Technology, Vol. B20, 2002, pp. 1084-1095.
[9] B. M. Radjenovic, M. D. Radmilovic-Radjenovic and Z. L. Petrovic, “Dynamics of the Profile Charging During SiO2 Etching in Plasma for High Aspect Ratio Trenches,” IEEE Transactions on Plasma Science, Vol. 36, No. 4, 2008, pp. 874-875.
[10] B. Radjenovic, M. Radmilovic-Radjenovic and P. Belicev, “Three-Dimensional Simulations with Fields and Particles in Software and Inflector Designs,” Journal of Software Engineering and Applications, Vol. 6, 2013, pp. 390-395.
[11] C. K. Birdsall, “Particle-In-Cell Charged-Particle Simulations, Plus Monte Carlo Collisions with Neutral Atoms, PIC-MCC,” IEEE Transactions on Plasma Science, Vol. 19, No. 2, 1991, pp. 65-85.
[12] J. P. Verboncoeur, “Particle Simulation of Plasmas: Review and Advances,” Plasma Physics and Controlled Fusion, Vol. 47, 2005, pp. A231-A260.
[13] H. C. Kim, F. Iza, S. S. Yang, M. Radmlovic-Radjenovic and J. K. Lee, “Particle and Fluid Simulations of Low-Temperature Plasma Discharges: Benchmarks and Kinetic Effects,” Journal of Physics D: Applied Physics, Vol. 38, 2005, pp. R283-R301.
[14] C. Geuzaine, “High Order Hybrid Finite Element Schemes for Maxwell’s Equations Taking Thin Structures and Global Quantities into Account,” Ph.D. Thesis, Universite de Liege, 2001.
[15] GetDP,
[16] TetGen,

comments powered by Disqus

Copyright © 2020 by authors and Scientific Research Publishing Inc.

Creative Commons License

This work and the related PDF file are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.