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Direct Correlation Between Grain Configuration and Electromigration Damage Development

  • W. C. Shih (a1), A. Ghiti (a2), K. S. Low (a2), A. L. Greer (a1), A. G. O'Neill (a2) and J. F. Walker (a3)...


The development of electromigration-induced voids and hillocks in Al - 4 wt. % Cu interconnects is monitored by scanning electron microscopy during interrupted testing and is correlated directly with the actual grain configuration including precipitates. The short segments under study and their grain structures are defined and observed using focused ion beam microscopy. The Cu content in precipitate grains is swept away before electromigration damage, and at most such grains there is subsequent grain thinning. The observations are compared with the results from a computer simulation based on a finite-element calculation of self-consistent current density and temperature distributions. For the first time the simulation uses the actual grain configuration and incorporates Cu atom migration, and back-fluxes driven by stress and concentration gradients. In the simulation the grain-boundary diffusivity is taken to be independent of boundary misorientation or is varied according to randomly assigned orientations. The comparison of the voiding in these two simulated cases and the observations shows that some grain configurations are very susceptible to electromigration damage whatever the diffusivities. For most configurations, however, the misorientation dependence of grainboundary diffusivity is significant and must be included if simulations are to be realistic.



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Direct Correlation Between Grain Configuration and Electromigration Damage Development

  • W. C. Shih (a1), A. Ghiti (a2), K. S. Low (a2), A. L. Greer (a1), A. G. O'Neill (a2) and J. F. Walker (a3)...


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