Novel Method for High Quality Thin Film Deposition

The Invention A novel deposition method based on the vacuum arc has been developed to deposit thin films and coating. The method utilizes a homogenous plasma jet which is free of film-degrading macroparticles The Need A vacuum arc discharge is sustained between a water cooled cathode, fabricated from a metal to be deposited, and a hollow anode, fabricated from a refractory conductor. The cathode-anode assembly creates a closed box separated by an isolator. A dense, energetic plasma forms in the hollow anode, and vaporizes any liquid droplets of cathode material which might be produced. The anode contains one or more apertures which allow plasma jets to be emitted in the direction of the substrates. The method is superior to conventional Vacuum Arc Deposition in that the plasma jets are macroparticle free, and hence deposited films are homogenous, whereas in the conventional method macroparticles contaminate and degrade the deposited coatings. While there are other techniques such as filtering to remove macroparticles, they are usually cumbersome and inefficient, whereas the present invention is very compact. The new technique produces high quality homogenous films at relatively high deposition rates Potential Applications A major cost element in the production of large scale integrated circuits is the deposition of metallic interconnections. The semiconductor industry faces an increasingly difficult challenge in finding suitable metallization materials and techniques, given the smaller scale lengths and faster speeds required for coming generations of semiconductor devices. Large aspect ratio trenches and vias must be filled without voids. While recently Cu metallization has been introduced using wet chemical processing, a cost-effective, dry process would be advantageous for integration with other semiconductor processes. The vacuum arc plasma is highly ionized, and hence plasma ions can be accelerated into a biased substrate to obtain highly directional ion flow, needed for trench filling. In addition, the unique properties of the vacuum arc plasma jet can be applied in ion sources for implantation. It is also useful for companies working for develop device systems in order to surface metallization and thin film deposition Patent US patent granted and provisional submitted Tech Transfer Officer Mr. Larry Loev Office: +972-3-6406544 Fax: +972-3-6406675 Mail: [email protected]

Inventor(s): Yitzhak (Isak) Beilis, Reuven (Raymond) Boxman

Type of Offer: Licensing

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