Spatially resolved diagnosis of stress-induced breakdown in oxide dots by in situ conducting atomic force microscopy

Xie, X. N.; Chung, H. J.; Sow, C. H.; Wee, A. T. S.
January 2005
Applied Physics Letters;1/10/2005, Vol. 86 Issue 2, p023112
Academic Journal
We report an investigation on the stress-induced breakdown (BD) in ultrathin oxide grown by atomic force microscopy (AFM oxide). A conducting atomic force microscopy (c-AFM) technique was employed to stress the AFM oxide and examine its BD behavior. It was found that thermal annealing has a strong impact on the dielectric strength of AFM oxide. The stress-induced trap generation probability, Pt, could be reduced by ∼50% after annealing the oxide at elevated temperatures. Such a thermal effect is related to the local structural relaxation and trap state minimization in AFM oxide upon annealing. The spatially resolved current images allow a microscopic diagnosis of the distribution of BD sites: isolated single BD spots and laterally propagated BD areas were observed in an oxide dot. Soft and hard breakdown sites were also distinguished on the current images.


Related Articles

  • Tunneling current and thickness inhomogeneities of ultrathin aluminum oxide films in magnetic tunneling junctions. Luo, E. Z.; Wong, S. K.; Pakhomov, A. B.; Xu, J. B.; Wilson, I. H.; Wong, C. Y. // Journal of Applied Physics;11/15/2001, Vol. 90 Issue 10, p5202 

    Tunneling current and thickness inhomogeneities of ultrathin aluminum oxide layers of magnetic tunnel junctions are studied by conducting atomic force microscopy (CAFM). The current inhomogeneities are attributed to thickness inhomogeneities on a nanometer scale. Thickness distributions are...

  • Conductive atomic force microscopy studies on dielectric breakdown behavior of ultrathin Al2O3 films. Ganesan, K.; Ilango, S.; Mariyappan, S.; Baroughi, M. Farrokh; Kamruddin, M.; Tyagi, A. K. // Applied Physics Letters;2/28/2011, Vol. 98 Issue 9, p092902 

    Ultrathin films of Al2O3 prepared by atomic layer deposition have been subjected to local electrical stress analysis using conducting atomic force microscopy. The loss of local dielectric integrity through current leakage in these extremely thin films is studied using scanning spreading...

  • Breakdown kinetics of Pr2O3 films by conductive-atomic force microscopy. Fiorenza, Patrick; Lo Nigro, Raffaella; Raineri, Vito; Lombardo, Salvatore; Toro, Roberta G.; Malandrino, Graziella; Fragalà, Ignazio L. // Applied Physics Letters;12/5/2005, Vol. 87 Issue 23, p231913 

    The dielectric breakdown (BD) kinetics of praseodymium thin films has been determined by comparison between current-voltage measurements on large-area (up to 78.54 μm2) metal-oxide-semiconductor structures and conductive-atomic force microscopy (C-AFM). C-AFM clearly images the weak BD single...

  • Kelvin probe force microscopy on corona charged oxidized semiconductor surfaces. Lägel, B.; Ayala, M. D.; Schlaf, R. // Applied Physics Letters;11/15/2004, Vol. 85 Issue 20, p4801 

    We present results demonstrating that Kelvin probe force microscopy (KPFM) can he used with high accuracy for corona charge aided oxide thickness mapping. In our experiments, corona charge layers of varying density were deposited onto the surface of thermally oxidized silicon wafers with...

  • Nano-oxidation of silicon surfaces by noncontact atomic-force microscopy: Size dependence on voltage and pulse duration. Calleja, Montserrat; García, Ricardo // Applied Physics Letters;6/5/2000, Vol. 76 Issue 23 

    Local oxidation of silicon surfaces by noncontact atomic-force microscopy is an emerging and promising method for patterning surfaces at the nanometer scale due to its very precise control of the feature size. Here, we study the voltage and pulse duration conditions to generate a motive of a...

  • Nanoscale oxidation of GaAs-based semiconductors using atomic force microscope. Okada, Yoshitaka; Amano, Shinji; Kawabe, Mitsuo; Shimbo, Barden N.; Harris, Jr., James S. // Journal of Applied Physics;2/15/1998, Vol. 83 Issue 4, p1844 

    Highlights an experiment which was conducted in order to explore the results obtained in an atomic force microscope (AFM) direct nonscale oxidation process. Indepth look at the experiment; Results of the experiment.

  • Nano-oxidation of silicon surfaces: Comparison of noncontact and contact atomic-force microscopy methods. Tello, Marta; Garcı´a, Ricardo // Applied Physics Letters;7/16/2001, Vol. 79 Issue 3 

    Local oxidation lithography by atomic-force microscopy is emerging as a powerful method for nanometer-scale patterning of surfaces. Here, we perform a comparative study of contact and noncontact atomic-force microscopy (AFM) oxidation experiments. The comparison of height and width dependencies...

  • Observation of contact holes by atomic force microscopy with a ZnO whisker tip. Kado, Hiroyuki; Yamamoto, Shin-ichi; Yokoyama, Kazuo; Tohda, Takao; Umetani, Yukihiro // Journal of Applied Physics;10/1/1993, Vol. 74 Issue 7, p4354 

    Presents a study which developed a precise imaging technique for atomic force microscopy (AFM) and observed complicated surface structures of integrated circuit devices by this technique. Significance of AFM; Function of the AFM with a zinc oxide whisker as a probing tip; Diagram of the AFM...

  • Oxide thickness mapping of ultrathin Al[sub 2]O[sub 3] at nanometer scale with conducting atomic force microscopy. Olbrich, Alexander; Ebersberger, Bernd; Boit, Christian; Vancea, Johann; Hoffmann, Horst; Altmann, Hans; Gieres, Guenther; Wecker, Joachim // Applied Physics Letters;5/7/2001, Vol. 78 Issue 19, p2934 

    In this work, we introduce conducting atomic force microscopy (C-AFM) for the quantitative electrical characterization of ultrathin Al[sub 2]O[sub 3] films on a nanometer scale length. By applying a voltage between the AFM tip and the conductive Co substrate direct tunneling currents in the sub...


Read the Article


Sorry, but this item is not currently available from your library.

Try another library?
Sign out of this library

Other Topics