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Patterning of GaN in High-Density Cl2- and BCl3-Based Plasmas

  • R. J. Shul (a1), R. D. Briggs (a1), J. Han (a2), S. J. Pearton (a2), J. W. Lee (a2), C. B. Vartuli (a2), K. P. Killeen (a3) and M. J. Ludowise (a3)...

Abstract

Fabrication of group-Ill nitride electronic and photonic devices relies heavily on the ability to pattern features with anisotropie profiles, smooth surface morphologies, etch rates often exceeding 0.5 μm/min, and a low degree of plasma-induced damage. Patterning these materials has been especially difficult due to their high bond energies and their relatively inert chemical nature as compared to other compound semiconductors. However, high-density plasma etching has been an effective patterning technique due to ion fluxes which are 2 to 4 orders of magnitude higher than conventional RIE systems. GaN etch rates as high as -1.3 μm/min have been reported in ECR generated ICI plasmas at -150 V dc-bias. In this study, we report high-density GaN etch results for ECR- and ICP-generated plasmas as a function of Cl2- and BCl3-based plasma chemistries.

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