Dr. Zhi Chen's Group
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A New Effect

New Effect: 100-100,000 Times Reduction of Gate Leakage Current of Silicon Oxide/Oxynitride
We found
a new effect, phonon-energy coupling enhancement (PECE)—an increase in bond energy coupling through the manipulation of silicon, oxygen, and deuterium vibrational modes undergoing proper rapid thermal process (RTP) and deuterium anneal, so that Si-O and Si-D bonds become more robust. This results in dramatical reduction of gate leakage current of silicon oxides and oxynitrides by 2-5orders of magnitude. This will allow chip producers to develop faster chips with reduced power consumption.

Related Publications and Presentations:

Reduction of Leakage Current of Silicon Oxide
Zhi Chen and Jun Guo, “Dramatic Enhancement of Phonon Energy Coupling at the SiO2/Si Interface Due to Rapid Thermal Processing of the Gate Oxide”, Abstract at 35th IEEE Semiconductor Interface Specialists Conference, San Diego, CA, Dec. 9-11, 2004. (PDF)
Zhi Chen, Jun Guo and Chandan B. Samantaray, “Dramatic Reduction of Gate Leakage Current of Ultrathin Oxides through Oxide Structure Modification,” 2005 International Semiconductor Device Research Symposium (ISDRS), IEEE, Dec. 7-9, 2005. (PDF)
Zhi Chen, Jun Guo, and F. Yang, “Phonon-energy-coupling enhancement: Strengthening the chemical bonds of the SiO2/Si system,” Appl. Phys. Lett. vol. 88, no. 8, 082905, Feb. 20, 2006. (PDF)
Zhi Chen and Jun Guo, “Dramatic reduction of gate leakage current of ultrathin oxides through oxide structure modification,” Solid-State Electronics, vol. 50, 1004–1011  (2006). (PDF)
Pangleen Ong and Zhi Chen, “Evidence of enhanced phonon-energy coupling in SiO2/Si,” Appl. Phys. Lett. 90, 113516 (2007). (PDF)

Zhi Chen
, “Mechanism for Generation of the Phonon-Energy-Coupling Enhancement Effect for Ultrathin Oxides on Silicon,” Appl. Phys. Lett. 91, 223513 (2007). (PDF)

Reduction of Leakage Current of High-k Gate Dielectric, HfSiON
Chandan. B. Samantaray and Zhi Chen, “Reduction of Gate Leakage Current of HfSiON Dielectrics through Enhanced Phonon-Energy Coupling,” Appl. Phys. Lett., vol. 89, 162903 (2006). (PDF)
Zhi Chen, Pangleen Ong, and Chandan B. Samantaray, “Large Leakage Current Reduction of Silicon Oxide and High-K Oxides Using the Phonon-Energy-Coupling Enhancement Effect,” Abstract, 2007 International Semiconductor Device Research Symposium, Dec. 12-14, 2007, College Park, MD. (PDF)

Reproducing the PECE Effect in Your Lab

Key Factors for Generating the PECE Effect (PDF)

Recipes for Observing the Large Leakage Current Reduction
Entire Fabrication Procedure (PDF); Lithograph Procedure (PDF)