Characterization of silicon oxynitride films using ion beam analysis techniques

S. R. Walker*, J. A. Davies, P. Mascher, S. G. Wallace, W. N. Lennard, G. R. Massoumi, R. G. Elliman, T. R. Ophel, H. Timmers

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    15 Citations (Scopus)


    Heavy-ion elastic recoil detection analysis (HIERDA) is the ideal technique for quantitative analysis of silicon oxynitride films on silicon because of its unique ability to measure simultaneously all elements of interest (i.e., H, C, N, O and Si), thereby permitting key parameters such as the O/N-ratio to be determined in a single measurement. However, high-energy accelerators suitable for such HIERDA measurements are becoming much less readily available. Hence, the present paper investigates and calibrates an alternative IBA technique for simultaneous O, N and C analysis - namely, the use of (d,p) and (d,α) nuclear reactions. Under optimum analysis conditions (850 keV deuterons and 150° detector angle), the Si background level sets a lower detection limit of approximately 1×1016 nitrogen atoms/cm2 and approximately 3×1015 oxygen atoms/cm2. H analysis is carried out separately, using low-energy ERDA and a 2 MeV 4He beam. Absolute cross-sections have been obtained for each of the (d,p) and (d,α) groups. Comparison with data in the recent Handbook of Modern Ion Beam Materials Analysis shows reasonable agreement (10-15%) for the (d,p) reactions on oxygen and carbon. However, in the case of nitrogen, the measured cross-section values are approximately 70% larger than the Handbook data. Several silicon oxynitride samples have been analyzed, first at UWO using 850 keV deuterons, and subsequently at ANU using HIERDA and a 200 MeV Au beam. The resulting O/N-ratios agree to within 10%. The relative importance of radiation damage effects is briefly discussed.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)461-466
    Number of pages6
    JournalNuclear Instruments and Methods in Physics Research, Section B: Beam Interactions with Materials and Atoms
    Issue number3
    Publication statusPublished - Oct 2000


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