We report on the detection of very low oxygen concentration in silicon by a secondary‐ion mass spectrometry (SIMS) method. Using a magnetic IMS 6F Cameca SIMS spectrometer and applying a very high primary Cs+ ion flux, prolonged presputtering, extensive vacuum chamber baking, titanium sublimation pump, and an LN trap, we have reached a detection limit of ~2 × 1015 O atoms/cm3 in chemical vapor deposition epitaxial Si films. This value appears to be at least 10 times lower than in any published or unpublished source known to the authors, including the reference sensitivities listed by the instrument manufacturer. Most likely, the key improvement that has allowed us to drive the detection limit to 1015 at/cm3 is the use of an ion pump in the analysis chamber. The working pressure in our analysis chamber is ~10−10 Thorr, ie, 1 decade lower than that the commercially equipped with a turbo pump. This paper demonstrates optimized analytical conditions for the oxygen measurements in Si, as a function of depth: (i) Very shallow profiles are practically impossible to measure accurately because of native oxide at the surface. (ii) Shallow‐to‐medium range profiles, up to ~20 μm, are the most amenable to SIMS measurements. (iii) Medium‐to‐deep (~20‐50 μm) range is required to follow interdiffusion and segregation in epitaxial layers when the oxygen‐free layer is grown on a CZ Si substrate. (iv) Extremely deep profiles, up to full thickness of the wafer, definitely necessitate beveling.
Surface and Interface Analysis – Wiley
Published: Jan 1, 2018
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