Patents Represented by Attorney, Agent or Law Firm Thomason, Moser & Patterson
  • Patent number: 6313042
    Abstract: A method of cleaning a contact area of a semiconductor or metal region on a substrate of an electronic device. First, the contact area is cleaned by exposing the substrate to a plasma that includes fluorine-containing species. Second, the substrate is exposed to a second atmosphere that scavenges fluorine, preferably formed by plasma decomposition of a hydrogen-containing gas. The second atmosphere removes any fluorine residue remaining on the contact area and overcomes any need to include argon sputtering in the cleaning process. Another aspect of the invention is a method of depositing a refractory metal over a contact area of a semiconductor region on a substrate. The contact area is cleaned according to the two-step process of the preceding paragraph. Then a refractory metal is deposited over the contact area. The two-step cleaning process can reduce the electrical resistance between the refractory metal and the semiconductor region.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 3, 1999
    Date of Patent: November 6, 2001
    Assignee: Applied Materials, Inc.
    Inventors: Barney M. Cohen, Jingang Su, Kenny King-Tai Ngan, Jr-Jyan Chen
  • Patent number: 6312568
    Abstract: The present invention provides a method of forming an aluminum nitride layer on a substrate in a processing chamber comprising depositing a first aluminum nitride layer at a first chamber pressure on a substrate, and then depositing a second aluminum nitride layer at a second chamber pressure higher than the first chamber pressure on the aluminum nitride nucleating layer. The first aluminum nitride layer is deposited by sputtering an aluminum target in a nitrogen and inert gas plasma in a processing chamber at a chamber pressure of about 1.5 to about 3 milliTorr. The second aluminum nitride layer is deposited by sputtering an aluminum target in a nitrogen and inert gas plasma at a chamber pressure of about 5 to about 10 milliTorr. The process may be carried out in the same physical vapor deposition chamber with the substrate being maintained at a temperature of preferably between about 125° C. and about 500° C.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 7, 1999
    Date of Patent: November 6, 2001
    Assignee: Applied Materials, Inc.
    Inventors: Ingo Wilke, Rochelle King, Hoa Kieu
  • Patent number: 6314573
    Abstract: A method and apparatus for providing subscription-on-demand (SOD) services for a interactive information distribution system, where a consumer may subscribe to packages of on-demand programs for a single price and view the programs in the subscribed package at any time for no additional cost. The apparatus and method are embodied in a combination of software, which provides a so called navigator, and hardware, including a subscriber terminal that provides certain functionality for the navigator and service provider equipment that supports the functionality of the terminal. As such, graphical user interface functionality is distributed between the service provider equipment and subscriber equipment (subscriber terminal). Such distribution provides an enjoyable, real time interactive process for accessing SOD services that allows the subscriber to rapidly identify and access a subscription service.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 29, 1998
    Date of Patent: November 6, 2001
    Assignee: DIVA Systems Corporation
    Inventors: Donald F. Gordon, Tobie La Rocca
  • Patent number: 6312319
    Abstract: A polishing media magazine for improved polishing. The polishing media magazine may include a conditioning element for rapid, uniform conditioning and cleaning of the polishing media. The polishing media magazine may include polishing media having sections of raised elevation to contain the fluid and may include a polishing support platen having features adapted to urge the edges of the polishing media upwards. The polishing media may be roll fed from a supply roll across a support platen and onto a take-up roll.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 10, 2000
    Date of Patent: November 6, 2001
    Inventors: Timothy J. Donohue, Roger O. Williams, John A. Barber, Jon A. Hoshizaki, Lawrence Lee, Ching-Ling Meng, Phil R. Sommer
  • Patent number: 6308932
    Abstract: Isolation valves for selectively sealing a first region from a second region. A gate valve can include a housing which defines a channel between the first and second regions. The valve includes a gate, located in the housing, and displaceable between a stowed position and a deployed position. When the gate is in the stowed position, communication is permitted between the first and second regions. When the gate is in the deployed position, the gate spans the channel and can be controlled to isolate the first and second regions. The valves can be used, for example, in connection with systems for processing large glass substrates. The valves are particularly useful for isolating long rectangular openings, such as the openings in substrate processing chambers. Isolating processing chambers or load lock chambers from one another, for example, in a linear system, is facilitated.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 22, 2000
    Date of Patent: October 30, 2001
    Assignee: Applied Komatsu Technology, Inc.
    Inventors: Gary C. Ettinger, John M. White
  • Patent number: 6309713
    Abstract: A layer of tungsten nitride is deposited on the upper surface of a wafer. The deposition is performed by providing a gaseous mixture and providing energy to the gaseous mixture to form a plasma. The gaseous mixture includes a first gaseous composition containing tungsten and a second gaseous composition containing nitrogen and hydrogen. The second gaseous composition is one that does not have a gas phase reaction with the first gaseous composition to form tungsten nitride, unless energy is provided to the gaseous mixture. The first gaseous composition may be tungsten hexafluoride (WF6). The gaseous mixture may be infused with energy to form a plasma by providing it with energy from an rf signal. In the plasma, the nitrogen dissociates into nitrogen ions, and the tungsten separates from the fluorine. The nitrogen ions and tungsten then combine to form tungsten nitride (W2N), which deposits on the wafer's upper surface.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 30, 1997
    Date of Patent: October 30, 2001
    Assignee: Applied Materials, Inc.
    Inventors: Alfred Mak, Ling Chen, David C. Smith, Mei Chang, Steve Ghanayem
  • Patent number: 6307818
    Abstract: An integrated coil support and lens holder assembly for a magneto-optical read/write head defined on at least one wafer with a coil supported on a first surface including leads extending to an electrical feedthrough supported in part on the first surface, a lens supporting region supporting a lens in alignment with an open center region of the coil, an electrical feedthrough region defined adjacent the lens and extending through the integrated coil support and lens holder assembly to a second surface, an electrical contact layer extending through to the first surface to contact the electrical cross-over region for the coil, and ABS features incorporated in the integrated coil support and lens holder assembly.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 9, 1999
    Date of Patent: October 23, 2001
    Assignee: Seagate Technology LLC
    Inventors: John H. Jerman, Joseph E. Davis
  • Patent number: 6305439
    Abstract: A single step shaft assembly and oil fill process begins with the sleeve and thrust plate being assembled, leaving open the entire shaft cavity. The assembly is then placed in an evacuation chamber, and air is evacuated. A measured amount of oil or hydrofluid is then placed in the shaft cavity. The shaft is then inserted in the shaft cavity and pressed or otherwise inserted into an opening in the thrust plate. When this is done, the oil will disperse throughout the bearing fluid gap and cavity. When properly measured, no oil will exit the cavity.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 25, 2000
    Date of Patent: October 23, 2001
    Assignee: Seagate Technology LLC
    Inventors: Kirby V. Pool, David Wuester, Thaveesinn Vasavakul, Kok Chai Low
  • Patent number: 6307728
    Abstract: A method and apparatus that provides a dechucking voltage applied to an electrostatic chuck that facilitates removal of a workpiece or workpiece therefrom. The method incorporates residual chucking force information obtained from the preceding dechuck operation to modify and improve the dechucking algorithm for the subsequent wafer dechucking cycle. To avoid charge accumulation on the electrostatic chuck when processing a succession of workpieces, the chucking and dechucking voltages reverse polarity after each workpiece is dechucked.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 21, 2000
    Date of Patent: October 23, 2001
    Assignee: Applied Materials, Inc.
    Inventor: Karl F. Leeser
  • Patent number: 6303523
    Abstract: A method and apparatus for depositing a low dielectric constant film by reaction of an organosilicon compound and an oxidizing gas at a constant RF power level from about 10 W to about 200 W or a pulsed RF power level from about 20 W to about 500 W. Dissociation of the oxidizing gas can be increased prior to mixing with the organosilicon compound, preferably within a separate microwave chamber, to assist in controlling the carbon content of the deposited film. The oxidized organosilane or organosiloxane film has good barrier properties for use as a liner or cap layer adjacent other dielectric layers. The oxidized organosilane or organosiloxane film may also be used as an etch stop and an intermetal dielectric layer for fabricating dual damascene structures. The oxidized organosilane or organosiloxane films also provide excellent adhesion between different dielectric layers.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 4, 1998
    Date of Patent: October 16, 2001
    Assignee: Applied Materials, Inc.
    Inventors: David Cheung, Wai-Fan Yau, Robert P. Mandal, Shin-Puu Jeng, Kuo-Wei Liu, Yung-Cheng Lu, Michael Barnes, Ralf B. Willecke, Farhad Moghadam, Tetsuya Ishikawa, Tze Wing Poon
  • Patent number: 6305019
    Abstract: An interactive information distribution system includes service provider equipment for generating an information stream that is coupled to an information channel and transmitted to subscriber equipment. The service provider also generates a command signal that is coupled to a command channel and transmitted to the subscriber equipment. The service provider also receives information manipulation requests from the subscriber via a back channel. A communication network supporting the information channel, command channel and back channel is coupled between the service provider equipment and the subscriber equipment. The service provider equipment contains two geographically distributed components: central server equipment and a remote video session manager. The central server equipment provides information streams to the remote video session manager in response to information manipulation commands.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 16, 1998
    Date of Patent: October 16, 2001
    Assignee: DIVA Systems Corporation
    Inventors: Bradley L. Dyer, Dwight Wesley Fronsdahl, Michael S. Gill, Christopher Goode, John Mark Randall, Steve Zack
  • Patent number: 6304424
    Abstract: A method and apparatus for retaining a substrate, such as a semiconductor wafer, upon an electrostatic chuck within a semiconductor wafer processing system. Specifically, the apparatus contains high voltage, DC power supply that is capable of both sourcing and sinking current at any polarity of output voltage level. This power supply is coupled to at least one electrode of an electrostatic chuck. Consequently, the power supply can be used to dynamically control the chucking voltage to apply a negative potential difference between said wafer and chuck.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 20, 1999
    Date of Patent: October 16, 2001
    Assignee: Applied Materials Inc.
    Inventors: Richard Mett, Siamak Salimian
  • Patent number: 6302964
    Abstract: A one-piece gas distribution faceplate for a showerhead. The one-piece gas distribution faceplate includes a first surface, a second surface, and a third surface. The one-piece gas distribution faceplate comprises a plurality of first gas holes extending through the one-piece gas distribution faceplate between the first surface and the second surface. The one-piece gas distribution faceplate has an internal gas distribution cavity defined by a plurality of interconnecting channels. A plurality of second gas holes extend through the one-piece gas distribution faceplate between the first surface into a plurality of the interconnecting channels. The interconnecting channels are fluidly coupled to a plenum that is in turn connected to at least one gas conduit. The gas conduit extends to the third surface.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 16, 2000
    Date of Patent: October 16, 2001
    Assignee: Applied Materials, Inc.
    Inventors: Salvador P. Umotoy, Lawrence C. Lei, Anh N. Nguyen, Steve H. Chiao
  • Patent number: 6303879
    Abstract: An apparatus which includes a laminated ceramic body with multilayer electrodes and a method of fabricating this apparatus are disclosed. The laminated ceramic body is formed by layers of ceramic material, with portions of certain layers being silk screened with an intermediate layer of electrically conductive material. Subsequent sintering results in the formation of a solid ceramic body with multilayer electrodes made up of the electrically conductive material layers. The apparatus further comprises an electrical connector extending partially into the ceramic body and intersecting at least one of these electrodes.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 17, 1999
    Date of Patent: October 16, 2001
    Assignee: Applied Materials, Inc.
    Inventor: Vincent E. Burkhart
  • Patent number: 6298685
    Abstract: The present invention generally provides a system for processing substrates having a carrier disposed primarily in at least one processing chamber and at least one shuttle for transferring substrates between the processing chamber and a load lock chamber. A plurality of processing chambers, load lock chambers, and other chambers can be joined to create a series of modular chambers through which the substrates are processed. Preferably, the carrier is only exposed to the processing environment, i.e., the carrier does not shuttle into a non-processing chamber. Thus, during continuous sequential processing of substrates, thermal cycling of the carrier is reduced. The carrier is reversibly moved within the processing chamber along a track. Multiple processing zones separated by partitions allow a plurality of processing regimes to occur within the same processing chamber.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 3, 1999
    Date of Patent: October 9, 2001
    Assignee: Applied Materials, Inc.
    Inventor: Avi Tepman
  • Patent number: 6298883
    Abstract: A centralizer (101) comprises two annular bands (102, 103) which are spaced apart by a plurality of hollow members (104, 105, 106) extending therebetween. The hollow members (104, 105, 106) overlie openings (110-115; 116-121) in the annular bands (102, 103) respectively. In use, fluid can enter and leave the hollow member via the openings. This flow helps maintain a film of fluid between the annular bands (102, 103) and the tubular on which the centralizer is mounted and thus facilitates rotation of the tubular with respect to the centralizer.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 30, 2000
    Date of Patent: October 9, 2001
    Assignee: Weatherford/Lamb, Inc.
    Inventor: Holger Kinzel
  • Patent number: 6299753
    Abstract: The present invention generally provides a fluid delivery system with particular application to electroplating. Two or more reservoirs are fluidly connected to one or more processing chambers by fluid delivery lines. A gas source is coupled to the reservoirs to selectively pressurize the reservoirs and cause fluid flow therefrom to the processing chambers through the fluid delivery lines. The fluid levels in the reservoirs and the processing chambers are controlled to facilitate avity-assisted flow of fluid from the processing chambers to the reservoirs via the fluid delivery line when the fluid levels in the processing chambers are higher than the fluid levels in the reservoirs. In operation, the reservoirs are alternately filled and emptied with a fluid circulated between the reservoirs and the processing chambers. Alternately filling and emptying the reservoirs relative to one another at constant rates maintains the fluid level and flow rate in the processing chamber substantially constant.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 1, 1999
    Date of Patent: October 9, 2001
    Assignee: Applied Materials, Inc.
    Inventors: Sandy S. Chao, Mark Lloyd
  • Patent number: 6298534
    Abstract: The present invention generally provides an apparatus and a method for separating components of a processing system which are mounted to one another and may adhere after being subjected to processing conditions. In one aspect, the invention provides a removal screw that can be threaded into a removal hole on a first component and an abutment screw that can be threaded into an attachment hole on a second component. To separate the first component from the second component, the abutment screw is first threaded into the attachment hole on the second or stationary component, and then the removal screw is threaded into the removal hole on the first component. An important aspect of this invention is that the removal screw does not contact, and damage, the contact surface between the first and second components to separate the components.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 20, 1998
    Date of Patent: October 9, 2001
    Assignee: Applied Materials, Inc.
    Inventor: Talex Sajota
  • Patent number: 6298071
    Abstract: A method and apparatus for managing both link and disk bandwidth utilization within the context of a multiple subscriber or user information distribution system by selectively providing variable bitrate and constant low bitrate information streams to one or more subscribers.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 3, 1998
    Date of Patent: October 2, 2001
    Assignee: Diva Systems Corporation
    Inventors: Clement G. Taylor, Jesse S. Lerman
  • Patent number: H2000
    Abstract: Films, made of polyethylenes and filers, and articles made therefrom greater WVTR than previously available films based on conventional Zeigler-Natta based polyethylenes. The polyethylenes are produced in a metallocene-catalyzed production process. The films may be made by a cast film process, and may be made in widely varying filler content, generally polyethylene to filler ratios of 30/70 to 70/30. The metallocene based polyethylenes when combined with filler also permit the extrusion of thinner films leading to lighter weight and softer films. The m-polyethylenes utilized for making such films typically have a Composition Distribution Breadth Index above 50%, a Mw/Mn below 3, and a Mz/Mw below 2.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 1, 1996
    Date of Patent: November 6, 2001
    Assignee: Exxon Chemical Patents, Inc.
    Inventors: Jeffrey Alan Middlesworth, Kevin Arthur Brady