Patents Examined by Ram Kackar
  • Patent number: 8377253
    Abstract: In an apparatus and method of vapor etching, a sample (S) to be etched is located in a main chamber 107 from which the atmosphere inside is evacuated. Etching gas is input into the main chamber 107 for a first period of time. Thereafter, the etching gas is evacuated from the main chamber 107 and cooling/purging gas is input into the main chamber for a second interval of time. Thereafter, the cooling/purging gas is evacuated from the main chamber 107. Desirably, the steps of inputting the etching gas into the main chamber 107 for the first period of time, evacuating the etching gas from the main chamber, inputting the cooling/purging gas into the main chamber 107 for the second period of time, and evacuating the cooling/purging gas from the main chamber are repeated until samples have been etched to a desired extent.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 7, 2009
    Date of Patent: February 19, 2013
    Assignee: Xactix, Inc.
    Inventors: Kyle S. Lebouitz, David L. Springer
  • Patent number: 8313611
    Abstract: A gas switching system for a gas distribution system for supplying different gas compositions to a chamber, such as a plasma processing chamber of a plasma processing apparatus, is provided. The chamber can include multiple zones, and the gas switching section can supply different gases to the multiple zones. The switching section can switch the flows of one or more gases, such that one gas can be supplied to the chamber while another gas can be supplied to a by-pass line, and then switch the gas flows.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 5, 2011
    Date of Patent: November 20, 2012
    Assignee: Lam Research Corporation
    Inventor: Dean J. Larson
  • Patent number: 8281739
    Abstract: The present invention generally comprises an RF shutter assembly for use in a plasma processing apparatus. The RF shutter assembly may reduce the amount of plasma creep below the substrate and shadow frame during processing, thereby reducing the amount of deposition that occurs on undesired surfaces. By reducing the amount of deposition on undesired surfaces, particle flaking and thus, substrate contamination may be reduced.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 29, 2008
    Date of Patent: October 9, 2012
    Assignee: Applied Materials, Inc.
    Inventors: Robin L. Tiner, Gaku Furuta, Yukinobu Adachi
  • Patent number: 8273211
    Abstract: Disclosed herein is a flat panel display manufacturing apparatus in a predetermined process is performed using plasma generated therein. In such a flat panel display manufacturing apparatus, a process gas is supplied into a chamber in an evenly diffused state to generate even plasma inside a symmetrical interior space of the chamber. Consequently, the flat panel display manufacturing apparatus can appropriately control flow rate of the plasma, thereby being capable of performing even processing on a large-scale substrate. In the flat panel display manufacturing apparatus, a substrate pedestal thereof is provided with a combination of vertical and horizontal shielding members, thereby being entirely protected from attack of the plasma, resulting in an increased life-span.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 7, 2008
    Date of Patent: September 25, 2012
    Assignee: Advanced Display Process Engineering Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Gwang Ho Hur, Jun Young Choi, Cheol Won Lee, Hyun Hwan Ahn, Young Joo Hwang, Chun Sik Kim
  • Patent number: 8268078
    Abstract: A method and system is described for reducing particle contamination of a substrate in a deposition system. The deposition system comprises one or more particle diffusers disposed therein and configured to prevent or partially prevent the passage of film precursor particles, or break-up or partially break-up film precursor particles. The particle diffuser may be installed in the film precursor evaporation system, or the vapor delivery system, or the vapor distribution system, or two or more thereof.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 16, 2006
    Date of Patent: September 18, 2012
    Assignee: Tokyo Electron Limited
    Inventors: Kenji Suzuki, Atsushi Gomi, Masamichi Hara, Yasushi Mizusawa
  • Patent number: 8262848
    Abstract: A plasma processing apparatus includes a worktable in a process chamber to horizontally place a target substrate thereon. A plasma generation space is defined above and around the worktable within the process chamber. The plasma generation space includes a peripheral plasma region and a main plasma region respectively located outside and inside an outer edge of the target substrate placed on the worktable. The apparatus further includes a magnetic field forming mechanism configured to form a magnetic field within the peripheral plasma region. The magnetic field includes magnetic force lines extending through the peripheral plasma region between a start position and an end position, at least one of which is located radially inside a sidewall of the process chamber.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 22, 2010
    Date of Patent: September 11, 2012
    Assignee: Tokyo Electron Limited
    Inventors: Masahide Iwasaki, Tomoaki Ukei
  • Patent number: 8236133
    Abstract: A gas distribution assembly for the ceiling of a plasma reactor includes a center fed hub and an equal path length distribution gas manifold underlying the center fed hub.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 20, 2008
    Date of Patent: August 7, 2012
    Assignee: Applied Materials, Inc.
    Inventors: Dan Katz, David Palagashvili, Brian K. Hatcher, Theodoros Panagopoulos, Valentin N. Todorow, Edward P. Hammond, IV, Alexander M. Paterson, Rodolfo P. Belen
  • Patent number: 8231799
    Abstract: A plasma reactor for processing a workpiece such as a semiconductor wafer has a housing defining a process chamber, a workpiece support configured to support a workpiece within the chamber during processing and comprising a plasma bias power electrode. The reactor further includes plural gas sources containing different gas species, plural process gas inlets and an array of valves capable of coupling any of said plural gas sources to any of said plural process gas inlets. The reactor also includes a controller governing said array of valves and is programmed to change the flow rates of gases through said inlets over time. A ceiling plasma source power electrode of the reactor has plural gas injection zones coupled to the respective process gas inlets. In a preferred embodiment, the plural gas sources comprise supplies containing, respectively, fluorocarbon or fluorohydrocarbon species with respectively different ratios of carbon and fluorine chemistries.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 28, 2006
    Date of Patent: July 31, 2012
    Assignee: Applied Materials, Inc.
    Inventors: Kallol Bera, Xiaoye Zhao, Kenny L. Doan, Ezra Robert Gold, Paul Lukas Brillhart, Bruno Geoffrion, Bryan Pu, Daniel J. Hoffman
  • Patent number: 8221580
    Abstract: A plasma reactor with a reactor chamber and an electrostatic chuck having a surface for holding a workpiece inside the chamber includes a backside gas pressure source coupled to the electrostatic chuck for applying a thermally conductive gas under a selected pressure into a workpiece-surface interface formed whenever a workpiece is held on the surface, and an evaporator inside the electrostatic chuck and a refrigeration loop having an expansion valve for controlling flow of coolant through the evaporator. The reactor further includes a temperature sensor in the electrostatic chuck, a thermal model capable of simulating heat transfer between the evaporator and the surface based upon measurements from the temperature sensor and an agile control processor coupled to the thermal model and governing the backside gas pressure source in response to predictions from the model of changes in the selected pressure that would bring the temperature measured by the sensor closer to a desired temperature.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 21, 2006
    Date of Patent: July 17, 2012
    Assignees: Applied Materials, Inc., BE Aerospace, Inc.
    Inventors: Douglas A. Buchberger, Jr., Paul Lukas Brillhart, Richard Fovell, Hamid Tavassoli, Douglas H. Burns, Kallol Bera, Daniel J. Hoffman, Kenneth W. Cowans, William W. Cowans, Glenn W. Zubillaga, Isaac Millan
  • Patent number: 8206506
    Abstract: A showerhead electrode includes inner and outer steps at an outer periphery thereof, the outer step cooperating with a clamp ring which mechanically attaches the electrode to a backing plate.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 7, 2008
    Date of Patent: June 26, 2012
    Assignee: Lam Research Corporation
    Inventors: Babak Kadkhodayan, Rajinder Dhindsa, Anthony de la Llera, Michael C. Kellogg
  • Patent number: 8202394
    Abstract: In a method of manufacturing a semiconductor device with plasma generated in a process chamber by impressing radio-frequency power, a level of a radio-frequency power for each step is switched over in response to processing in each step upon applying a plurality of processing steps to a semiconductor substrate while holding the semiconductor substrate, and thereby the plurality of steps are carried out successively.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 11, 2002
    Date of Patent: June 19, 2012
    Assignee: Renesas Electronics Corporation
    Inventors: Tsuyoshi Moriya, Natsuko Ito, Fumihiko Uesugi
  • Patent number: 8202575
    Abstract: Vapor deposition systems and methods associated with the same are provided. The systems may be designed to include features that can promote high quality deposition; simplify manufacture, modification and use; as well as, reduce the footprint of the system, amongst other advantages.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 27, 2005
    Date of Patent: June 19, 2012
    Assignee: Cambridge NanoTech, Inc.
    Inventors: Douwe J. Monsma, Jill S. Becker
  • Patent number: 8197599
    Abstract: A gas head that, at low cost, is capable of suppressing any deactivation of radical gas and capable of uniformly introducing a raw material gas on a substrate; and a relevant thin-film manufacturing apparatus are provided. A gas head (13) according to the present invention includes a reactive gas introduction port (30A) for introduction of a reactive gas, a plurality of raw material gas introduction ports (30B) for introduction of a raw material gas, and a dispersion board (32) for dispersing the raw material gas, wherein the plurality of the raw material gas introduction ports (30B) are disposed so as to surround the periphery of the reactive gas introduction port (30A). The reactive gas having been introduced in the reactive gas introduction port (30A) is mixed with the raw material gas having been introduced through a plurality of raw material gas introduction ports (30B) and dispersed by means of the dispersion board (32).
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 13, 2006
    Date of Patent: June 12, 2012
    Assignee: Ulvac, Inc.
    Inventors: Takakazu Yamada, Nobuyuki Kato, Masaki Uematsu
  • Patent number: 8197637
    Abstract: A semiconductor fabrication apparatus and a method of fabricating a semiconductor device using the same performs semiconductor etching and deposition processes at an edge of a semiconductor substrate after disposing the semiconductor substrate at a predetermined place in the semiconductor fabrication apparatus. The semiconductor fabrication apparatus has lower, middle and upper electrodes sequentially stacked. The semiconductor substrate is disposed on the middle electrode. Semiconductor etching and deposition processes are performed on the semiconductor substrate in the semiconductor fabrication apparatus. The semiconductor fabrication apparatus forms electrical fields along an edge of the middle electrode during performance of the semiconductor etching and deposition processes.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 19, 2008
    Date of Patent: June 12, 2012
    Assignee: SAMSUNG Electronics Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Kyung-Woo Lee, Jin-Sung Kim, Joo-Byoung Yoon, Yeong-Cheol Lee, Sang-Jun Park, Hee-Kyeong Jeon
  • Patent number: 8197638
    Abstract: Wafer contamination is prevented, while preventing damage to a high-frequency electrode and a susceptor. A main body 41 of the susceptor 40 of an MMT apparatus is composed of a heater arranging plate 42, an electrode arranging plate 48, and a supporting plate 56 all made from quartz. A circular electrode arranging hole 49 with a fixed depth is concentrically formed on the upper surface of the electrode arranging plate 48, and quadrangular pillars 50 are formed protruding in a matrix on the bottom of the electrode arranging hole 49. Multiple insertion holes 52 are formed in a disk-shaped high-frequency electrode 51, and the high-frequency electrode 51 is installed in the electrode arranging hole 49 by inserting each pillar 50 into each insertion hole 52. The gaps Sa and Sb are provided between the high-frequency electrode 51 and the electrode arranging plate 48. The pillar 50 boosts the strength of the electrode arranging plate 48.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 4, 2005
    Date of Patent: June 12, 2012
    Assignee: Hitachi Kokusai Electric Inc.
    Inventors: Mitsunori Ishisaka, Toshimitsu Miyata
  • Patent number: 8192577
    Abstract: In a plasma etching apparatus for performing a plasma etching on a surface of a substrate mounted on a susceptor in a processing vessel, a focus ring is installed to surround the substrate and has a first region at an inner side on a surface thereof, in which an average surface roughness is small such that a reaction product produced during an etching processing is not captured to be deposited, and a second region at an outer side from the first region, in which an average surface roughness is large such that a reaction product produced during the etching process is captured to be deposited. A boundary between the first and the second region is a part where an etching amount is relatively significantly changed compared to other parts while the focus ring is equipped in the plasma etching apparatus and the plasma etching is performed on the substrate.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 25, 2009
    Date of Patent: June 5, 2012
    Assignee: Tokyo Electron Limited
    Inventors: Daiki Satoh, Hideyuki Kobayashi, Masato Horiguchi
  • Patent number: 8172946
    Abstract: Stagnation of gas used for substrate processing in an exhaust trap is prevented, and localized precipitation of components in the gas used for substrate processing is reduced.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 24, 2006
    Date of Patent: May 8, 2012
    Assignee: Hitachi Kokusai Electric Inc.
    Inventors: Tomoshi Taniyama, Yoshikazu Takashima, Mikio Ohno
  • Patent number: 8142608
    Abstract: An atmospheric pressure plasma reactor includes a high-voltage electrode, a common grounded electrode, a bias electrode and at least one dielectric layer. The high-voltage electrode is connected to a high-voltage power supply. The common grounded electrode is used with the high-voltage electrode to discharge and therefore produce planar atmospheric plasma from reactive gas. The bias electrode is used to generate bias for attracting the ions of the planar atmospheric pressure plasma. The dielectric layer is used to suppress undesirable arc discharge during the discharging.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 11, 2007
    Date of Patent: March 27, 2012
    Assignee: Atomic Energy Council—Institute of Nuclear Energy Research
    Inventors: Chi-fong Ai, Mien-Win Wu, Cheng-Chang Hsieh
  • Patent number: 8117986
    Abstract: The present invention presents an improved deposition shield for surrounding a process space in a plasma processing system, wherein the design and fabrication of the deposition shield advantageously provides for a clean processing plasma in the process space with substantially minimal erosion of the deposition shield.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 16, 2006
    Date of Patent: February 21, 2012
    Assignee: Tokyo Electron Limited
    Inventors: Hidehito Saigusa, Taira Takase, Kouji Mitsuhashi, Hiroyuki Nakayama
  • Patent number: 8097083
    Abstract: An operating method for a large dimension plasma enhanced atomic layer deposition cavity and an apparatus thereof are provided. The present invention reduces the time needed for filling the manufacturing gas into the large volume manufacturing cavity. Therefore, the plasma enhanced atomic layer deposition apparatus can switch the precursors rapidly to increase the thin film deposition rate, reduce the manufacturing gas consumption and lower the manufacturing cost.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 6, 2005
    Date of Patent: January 17, 2012
    Assignee: China Star Optoelectronics International (HK) Limited
    Inventors: Hung-Wen Wei, Hung-Che Ting