Reactive Ion Etching of PECVD Silicon Dioxide (SiO2) Layer for MEMS Application

Report No. ARL-TR-3269
Authors: Derwin Washington
Date/Pages: July 2004; 22 pages
Abstract: A reactive ion etching (RIE) process has been developed to etch up to 1-micrometer (1 µm) layer of low stress SiO2 (Silicon Dioxide) Plasma Enhanced Chemical Vapor Deposition (PECVD) film compatible for MEMS research applications. Etch rates from as low as 123 nm/min at 100 W to as high as 721 nm/min at 900 W powers were demonstrated using fluorocarbon (CF4) reactive gas plasma. RIE selectivity (SiO2/PR-Photoresist was 3:1 at 900W. The measured thickness variation was 0.13 µm on 4-inch substrate for 1 µm thick SiO2 film.
Distribution: Approved for public release
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Last Update / Reviewed: July 1, 2004