Minimizing film residual stress with in situ OES big data using principal component analysis of deposited AlN films by pulsed DC reactive sputtering

Te Yun Lu, Yu Pu Yang, Hsiao Han Lo, Peter J. Wang, Walter Lai, Yiin Kuen Fuh, Tomi T. Li

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

In this study, aluminum nitride (AlN) thin films were deposited on Si (100) and investigated on the minimum film residual stress with varying two critical deposition conditions in N2 gas flow and power. The pulsed DC reactive sputtering of aluminum targets was carried out in gas ratio of nitrogen (N2) and argon (Ar) plasma with N2:Ar ratios from 15:15 to 60:15 and power from 400 to 1000 W. According to the large-scale data of in situ optical emission spectroscopy (OES) study in connection with film microstructure information by analyzing X-ray diffraction (XRD) patterns, scanning electron microscope (SEM) micrographs, transmission electron microscope (TEM) analyses, Fourier-transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR) spectra, and alpha-step profilers, the deposited film stress states can be highly affected by the critical processing parameters of N2 flow rate and power. In addition, the proposed value of residual stress (VRS) can be calculated by PC1-DEV (the standard deviation in the first principal component direction) method for accurate prediction of the stress states of deposited films, i.e., compressive stress or tensile stress, which will provide valuable information on residual stress characterization as the in situ monitoring tool for the AlN thin film deposition process. In summary, a methodology based on large data of OES by which principal component analysis (PCA) was utilized to reduce its dimension can be used to determine residual stress characterization from a simple measurement in situ plasma monitoring tool is suggested.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1975-1990
Number of pages16
JournalInternational Journal of Advanced Manufacturing Technology
Volume114
Issue number7-8
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 2021

Keywords

  • Aluminum nitride (AlN)
  • OES big data
  • PCA
  • Power generator
  • Pulsed DC
  • Residual stress
  • Sputtering

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