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Ion Beam Etch for Patterning of Resistive RAM (ReRAM) Devices

  • Narasimhan Srinivasan (a1), Katrina Rook (a1), Ivan Berry (a2), Binyamin Rubin (a1) and Frank Cerio (a1)...


We investigate the feasibility of inert ion beam etch (IBE) for subtractive patterning of ReRAM-type structures. We report on the role of the angle-dependent ion beam etch rates in device area control and the minimization of sidewall re-deposition. The etch rates of key ReRAM materials are presented versus incidence angle and ion beam energy. As the ion beam voltage is increased, we demonstrate a significant enhancement in the relative etch rate at glancing incidence (for example, by a factor of 2 for HfO2). Since the feature sidewall is typically exposed to glancing incidence, this energy-dependence plays a role in optimization of the feature shape and in sidewall re-deposition removal.

We present results of SRIM simulations to estimate depth of ion-bombardment damage to the TMO sidewall. Damage is minimized by minimizing ion energy; its depth can be reduced by roughly a factor of 5 over typical IBE energy ranges. For example, ion energies of less than ∼250 eV are indicated to maintain damage below ∼1nm. Multi-angle and multi-energy etch schemes are proposed to maximize sidewall angle and minimize damage, while eliminating re-deposition across the TMO. We utilize 2-D geometry/3-D etch model to simulate IBE patterning of tight-pitched ReRAM features, and generate etched feature shapes.


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