A new hydrogen chloride plasma-based copper etching process
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The plasma-copper reaction that is based on the hydrogen chloride (HCl) feed gas has been studied. Copper line can be etched at a high rate with this process. The wall profile can also be controlled by the process condition. Influences of process parameters such as plasma exposure time, pressure, plasma power, and substrate temperature, to the reaction process were investigated. In addition to the reaction rate, the relationships between the structure of the reaction product and the process condition were investigated. The results show that both the plasma-phase chemistry and the ion bombardment energy play important roles in the reaction mechanism. The reaction product is a non-stoichiometric, non-homogeneous, and polycrystalline CuClx film. These results are critical to the fabrication of advanced microelectronic devices as well as to the understanding of this new copper dry etching process.
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