Porous pSiCOH materials with ultralow dielectric constants (ulk) have been developed with dielectric constants reaching values below 2.0. The pSiCOH films, composed of Si, C, O, and H atoms, are prepared by plasma-assisted chemical vapor deposition (PECVD), showing that PECVD can be used to prepare porous materials. The pSiCOH films are deposited as dual-phase materials, and the porosity is formed in them by curing the as-deposited films by thermal anneals, electron beams, or UV irradiation. The porous pSiCOH dielectrics are suitable for integration in the interconnects of VLSI chips of the 45-nm-and-beyond technology nodes, and films with dielectric constants of 2.4 have already been implemented in upcoming 45-nm products. This review discusses the fabrication of pSiCOH films and the characterization of their structure, porosity, and electrical and mechanical properties. The limitations of some of the characterization techniques of these amorphous thin films are also addressed.


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  • Article Type: Review Article
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