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Why Silicon is not getting deposited by rf sputtering?

Time:2020/05/09 丨 source:未知 丨 visit count:

Why Silicon is not getting deposited by rf sputtering ?


I am using a fresh Silicon target (dia 2 inch and 6mm thickness 99.99%pure ). The base pressure of the system before gas flow is 10^-5 mbar and the Ar mass flow sccm value is set to 20. Then the pressure is 10^-3mbar. The power is given 20W. The reflected power is 0W. The target-substrate distance is 6 cm. The system is rf magnetron sputtering with has a automatic matching network. The plasma is pinkish purple. I have done this for 1hr still there is no silicon deposited on glass substrate.

A1:  The vacuum level is no so good. I can remember, that at 1e-6 torr you have adsorption of one ML of residual molecules per second.
If you have in your residual atmosphere H2O, you receive SiO film during Si deposition...
In order to test the deposition process you can use a mask to cover a part of the substrate and to see after the deposition if a step is forming.

A2:  Maybe you have a deposit but thin enough that you don't see it: you should try to deposit longer and on a substrate other than glass (without Si) and then do an EDS analysis to check that you have deposited Si.

A3:  As per my knowledge, deposition power and pressure also influence the film thickness, microstructure. if the too much low and high deposition pressure also reduce the film thickness and some times may not form the film. depending on your system configuration, you need to use the optimized conditions..

A4:  Your ultimate vacuum is not very low and it is likely that there is still some oxygen in your deposition chamber so that you probably deposit SiOx which could be transparent, that is why I recommended in my first answer to check the presence of Si by an EDS analysis after a deposition on a substrate without Si.

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