Impact of a Treatment Combining Nitrogen Plasma Exposure and Forming Gas Annealing on Defect Passivation of SiO2/SiC Interfaces
We propose a treatment combining nitrogen plasma exposure and forming gas annealing (FGA) to improve the electrical properties of SiO2/SiC interfaces. Although conventional FGA at 450°C alone is not effective for reducing interface traps and fixed charges, our combination treatment effectively reduces both even at moderate temperatures. We achieved further improvement by applying our treatment at higher (over 900°C) FGA temperatures, including lower interface state density (Dit) values for both deep and shallow energy levels (1 - 4 x 1011 cm-2eV-1). Considering that nitrogen incorporation promotes hydrogen passivation of interface defects, a possible mechanism for the improved electrical properties is that interface nitridation eliminates carbon clusters or Si-O-C bonds, which leads to the formation of simple Si and C dangling bonds that can be readily terminated by hydrogen. We therefore believe that our treatment is a promising method for improving the performance of SiC-based MOS devices.
Amador Pérez-Tomás, Philippe Godignon, Miquel Vellvehí and Pierre Brosselard
H. Watanabe et al., "Impact of a Treatment Combining Nitrogen Plasma Exposure and Forming Gas Annealing on Defect Passivation of SiO2/SiC Interfaces", Materials Science Forum, Vols. 615-617, pp. 525-528, 2009