Observation of short-range oxygen migration and oxygen exchange during low temperature plasma anodization of silicon through thin ZrO2 films

J. Perriere, J. Siejka, Robert P. H. Chang

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Low temperature 16O plasma anodization of silicon through thin 18O-enriched ZrO2 layers has been studied. Measurements of the overall oxygen (16O and 18O) and cation contents as well as their distribution in the films were carriedout using combined Rutherford backscattering and nuclear microanalysis techniques. The data show (1) the conservation of the order of oxygen atoms during SiO2 growth and (2) a partial exchange of 18O present in the Zr18O2 with the 16O in the plasma. These results show that the microscopic mechanism of oxygen transport during low temperature plasma anodization involves a short-range oxygen migration, in contrast with the case of high temperature thermal oxidation. Analysis of the 18O depth profiles in the Zr18O2 shows that the exchange phenomenon is not only at the plasma-oxide interface but that it extends to a depth of about 200 Å. This strongly suggests that the formation of positive oxygen ions in the Zr18O2 is due to high energy (about 30 eV) plasma electron bombardment. A possible mechanism for this process is discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)309-314
Number of pages6
JournalThin Solid Films
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Sep 24 1982


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surfaces, Coatings and Films
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Surfaces and Interfaces

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