Study of the kinetics and mechanism of the thermal nitridation of SiO2

Vasquez, R. P.; Madhukar, A.; Grunthaner, F. J.; Naiman, M. L.
February 1985
Applied Physics Letters;2/15/1985, Vol. 46 Issue 4, p361
Academic Journal
X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS) has been used to study the nitridation time and temperature dependence of the nitrogen distribution in thermally nitrided SiO[sub 2] films. The XPS data show that the maximum nitrogen concentration near the (SiO[sub x] N[sub y])/Si interface is initially at the interface, but moves 20-25 Ã… away from the interface with increasing nitridation time. Computer modeling of the kinetic processes involved is carried out and reveals a mechanism in which diffusing species, initially consisting primarily of nitrogen, react with the substrate, followed by formation of the oxygen-rich oxynitride due to reaction of the diffusing oxygen displaced by the slower nitridation of the SiO[sub 2]. The data are consistent with this mechanism provided the influence of the interfacial strain on the nitridation and oxidation kinetics is explicitly accounted for.


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