Abstract: The growth of large diameter silicon carbide (SiC) crystals produced by the physical vapor transport (PVT) method is outlined. Methods to increase the crystal diameters, and to turn these large diameter crystals into substrates that are ready for the epitaxial growth of SiC or other non homogeneous epitaxial layers are discussed. We review the present status of 150 mm and 200 mm substrate quality at Cree, Inc. in terms of crystallinity, dislocation density as well as the final substrate surface quality.
Abstract: Efforts to develop 150 mm 4H SiC bare wafer and epitaxial substrates for power electronic device applications have resulted in quality improvements, such that key metrics match or outperform 100 mm substrates. Total dislocation densities and threading screw dislocation densities measured for 150 mm wafers were ~4100 cm-2 and ~100 cm-2, respectively, compared with values of ~5900 cm-2 and ~300 cm-2 measured for 100 mm wafers. While median basal plane dislocation counts in 150 mm samples exceed those of the smaller platform, a nearly 45% reduction was realized, resulting in a median density of ~3900 cm-2. Epilayers grown on 150 mm substrates likewise exhibit quality metrics that are comparable to 100 mm samples, with median thickness and doping sigma/mean values of 1.1% and 4.4%, respectively.
Abstract: The presence of threading mixed dislocations (TMDs) (with both edge and screw component) in 4H-SiC crystals grown by PVT method has been reported both from axial slices (wafers cut parallel to the growth axis) and commercial offcut wafers (cut almost perpendicular to the growth axis). In this paper, a systematic method is developed and demonstrated to unambiguously determine the Burgers vectors of TMDs in 4H-SiC commercial offcut wafers using both Synchrotron Monochromatic X-ray Topography (SMBXT) and Ray Tracing Simulations. The principle of this method is that the contrast of dislocations on different reflections varies with the relative orientation of Burgers vectors with respect to the diffraction vectors. Measurements confirm that in commercial offcut wafers the majority of the threading dislocations with screw component are mixed type dislocations.
Abstract: Solution growth of high-quality 4H-SiC bulk crystals has been performed by using Si-Cr based melt at 2000°C. Through enlargement of crystal diameter which is controlled by meniscus height during growth, dislocation free area has been successfully obtained on the periphery of the crystal. However, the threading dislocations in the seed crystal have penetrated into the grown crystal and have been located around the center of the crystal. To reduce dislocation density in the grown crystals, we have used threading-dislocation-free seedcrystals prepared by solution growth on (1-100). The solution growth on the seed crystal sliced from the (1-100) crystal has resulted in very low dislocation density of grown crystals. In an area of 16 mm2 for the growth surface, no dislocation has been detected.
Abstract: In order to diffuse the use of SiC, mass-production technologies of SiC wafers are needed. It is easy to be understood that high-speed and long-sized growth technologies are connected directly with mass-production technologies. The gas source growth method such as HT-CVD has the possibilities and the potential of the high-speed and long-sized growth. In this article, it was clarified that the high growth rate were achieved by the control of the source gas partial pressures and by the gas boundary layers. The average growth rate was 1mm/h on the f4 inch-diameter crystal, and the maximum growth rate reached 3.6 mm/h on the 12.5x25 mm tetragon by the above gas control. The crystal qualities of the gas source methods were also evaluated the equivalent level in comparison with the sublimation method. Concerning the 1mm/h-growth f3 inch crystal, the densities of TSDs were kept in the 102 cm-2 levels from the seed to the upper-side of the ingot. Moreover, the ingot size increased year by year and a f4 inch x 43 mm sized ingot has been developed.
Abstract: Limitations in the very fast growth of 4H-SiC crystals are surveyed for a high-temperature gas source method. The evolution of macro-step bunching and void formation in crystal growth is investigated by changing the partial pressures of the source gases and crystal rotation speeds. The variation in macro-step formation depending on radial positions, where step-flow or spiral growth governs, of a grown crystal is also revealed. Based on the relation between growth conditions and macro-step bunching, a trade-off between growth rate enhancement and crystal quality and a method to improve such trade-off are discussed. Nitrogen at a high concentration under very high growth rates in the high-temperature gas source method is also investigated.
Abstract: We developed a solution growth process related to the combination of the Vertical Bridgman and Vertical Gradient Freeze in a metal free Si-C melt at growth temperatures of 2300 °C. For this procedure we present a detailed description of the growth process and discuss the influence of different growth parameters on the surface morphology and growth rate. So far, we managed to grow SiC layers with a thickness up to 300 μm. The characterization of the crystal morphology was carried out using SEM images and the metal concentration was estimated using SIMS.
Abstract: Using a sessile drop method, investigation of the surface reconstruction of a Si-face, 4°off (0001) 4H-SiC surface in contact with pure silicon or Al-Si alloys has been carried out in the 1600-1800°C temperature range. In pure silicon and at 1600°C, the surface evolves with a two stage process: i) a fast step-bunching leading to parallel macrosteps and ii) a slower step leading equilibrium morphology, composed of (0001), (10-1n) and (01-1n) facets. Increasing the temperature to 1800°C or adding a few percents of aluminium drastically enhance the first stage, but strongly reduce the second one.
Abstract: 150 mm diameter 4H-SiC boules were grown by the physical vapor transport (PVT) method. Synchrotron white beam X-ray topography (SWBXT) was carried out to investigate the distribution of defects in axial slices cut from the boule. It was found that an increase of dislocations and micropipes was mainly induced by inclusions. After eliminating these inclusions, which were formed in the mid to late stage of the crystal growth, both the screw dislocation density and base plane dislocation density could be decreased down to a magnitude of 102 cm-2, which is comparable to that of high quality 100 mm diameter SiC substrates.