Low temperature deposition of tantalum diffusion barrier by filtered cathodic vacuum arc

G. Q. Yu, B. K. Tay, Shu Ping Lau, K. Prasad, J. X. Gao

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


Tantalum (Ta) diffusion barrier films were deposited on un-patterned and patterned silicon substrates at ambient temperature and without substrate bias by filtered cathodic vacuum arc (FCVA). The films were characterized by atomic force microscopy, scanning electron microscopy, x-ray diffraction, x-ray photoelectron spectroscopy, four-point resistivity probe and surface profilometer. It was found that the Ta film was 750 Å thick and free of C and O except for surface contamination. The film morphology was smooth and uniform with root-mean-square roughness of ∼0.82 Å. The Ta film was polycrystalline β phase with a mean grain size of ∼3 nm and possessed a dense microstructure, which are ascribed to the high energy of the condensing species in FCVA. It was shown that the Ta filling of the trenches (0.33 μm wide, 1: 1 aspect ratio) was very conformal and quite uniform. Also, it was preliminarily found that at the Ta film was effective against diffusion of Cu into Si at 600°C.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1355-1359
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Physics D: Applied Physics
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - 7 Jun 2003
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Acoustics and Ultrasonics
  • Surfaces, Coatings and Films


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