Patents by Inventor Stephen Moffatt

Stephen Moffatt has filed for patents to protect the following inventions. This listing includes patent applications that are pending as well as patents that have already been granted by the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO).

  • Patent number: 10508341
    Abstract: Embodiments of the invention provide methods for processing a substrate within a processing chamber. In one embodiment, the method comprises providing a precursor gas mixture into the processing chamber, the precursor gas mixture comprising a deposition precursor gas and an etch precursor gas, subjecting the precursor gas mixture to a thermal energy from a heat source to deposit a material layer on a surface of the substrate, wherein the thermal energy is below the minimum required for pyrolysis of the etch precursor gas, and after the material layer is formed on the surface of the substrate, subjecting the precursor gas mixture to a photon energy from a radiation source, the photon energy having a wavelength and a power level selected to promote photolytic dissociation of the etch precursor gas over the deposition precursor gas and etch a portion of the material layer from the surface of the substrate.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 28, 2015
    Date of Patent: December 17, 2019
    Assignee: APPLIED MATERIALS, INC.
    Inventor: Stephen Moffatt
  • Patent number: 10370762
    Abstract: Embodiments of the disclosure provide a method and apparatus for depositing a layer on a substrate. In one embodiment, the method includes exposing a surface of the substrate disposed within a processing chamber to a fluid precursor, directing an electromagnetic radiation generated from a radiation source to a light scanning unit such that the electromagnetic radiation is deflected and scanned across the surface of the substrate upon which a material layer is to be formed, and initiating a deposition process with the electromagnetic radiation having a wavelength selected for photolytic dissociation of the fluid precursor to deposit the material layer onto the surface of the substrate. The radiation source may comprise a laser source, a bright light emitting diode (LED) source, or a thermal source. In one example, the radiation source is a fiber laser producing output in the ultraviolet (UV) wavelength range.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 22, 2016
    Date of Patent: August 6, 2019
    Assignee: Applied Materials, Inc.
    Inventor: Stephen Moffatt
  • Publication number: 20190139773
    Abstract: The present invention generally describes one ore more methods that are used to perform an annealing process on desired regions of a substrate. In one embodiment, an amount of energy is delivered to the surface of the substrate to preferentially melt certain desired regions of the substrate to remove unwanted damage created from prior processing steps (e.g., crystal damage from implant processes), more evenly distribute dopants in various regions of the substrate, and/or activate various regions of the substrate. The preferential melting processes will allow more uniform distribution of the dopants in the melted region, due to the increased diffusion rate and solubility of the dopant atoms in the molten region of the substrate. The creation of a melted region thus allows: 1) the dopant atoms to redistribute more uniformly, 2) defects created in prior processing steps to be removed, and 3) regions that have hyper-abrupt dopant concentrations to be formed.
    Type: Application
    Filed: November 26, 2018
    Publication date: May 9, 2019
    Inventors: Paul CAREY, Aaron Muir HUNTER, Dean JENNINGS, Abhilash J. MAYUR, Stephen MOFFATT, William SCHAFFER, Timothy N. THOMAS, Mark YAM
  • Publication number: 20190105614
    Abstract: Gas injectors for providing uniform flow of fluid are provided herein. The gas injector includes a plenum body. The plenum body includes a recess, a protrusion adjacent to the recess and extending laterally away from the plenum body, and a plurality of nozzles extending laterally from an exterior surface of the plenum body. The plenum body has a plurality of holes in an exterior wall of the plenum body. Each nozzle is in fluid communication with an interior volume of the plenum body. By directing the flow of fluid, the gas injector provides for a uniform deposition.
    Type: Application
    Filed: August 29, 2018
    Publication date: April 11, 2019
    Inventors: Vishwas Kumar PANDEY, Lara HAWRYLCHAK, Eric Kihara SHONO, Kartik SHAH, Christopher S. OLSEN, Sairaju TALLAVARJULA, Kailash PRADHAN, Rene GEORGE, Johanes S. SWENBERG, Stephen MOFFATT
  • Patent number: 10181409
    Abstract: An optical system that is able to reliably deliver a uniform amount of energy across an anneal region contained on a surface of a substrate. The optical system is adapted to deliver, or project, a uniform amount of energy having a desired two-dimensional shape on a desired region on the surface of the substrate. An energy source for the optical system is typically a plurality of lasers, which are combined to form the energy field.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 24, 2014
    Date of Patent: January 15, 2019
    Assignee: APPLIED MATERIALS, INC.
    Inventors: Stephen Moffatt, Douglas E. Holmgren, Samuel C. Howells, Edric Tong, Bruce E. Adams, Jiping Li, Aaron Muir Hunter
  • Patent number: 10141191
    Abstract: The present invention generally describes one ore more methods that are used to perform an annealing process on desired regions of a substrate. In one embodiment, an amount of energy is delivered to the surface of the substrate to preferentially melt certain desired regions of the substrate to remove unwanted damage created from prior processing steps (e.g., crystal damage from implant processes), more evenly distribute dopants in various regions of the substrate, and/or activate various regions of the substrate. The preferential melting processes will allow more uniform distribution of the dopants in the melted region, due to the increased diffusion rate and solubility of the dopant atoms in the molten region of the substrate. The creation of a melted region thus allows: 1) the dopant atoms to redistribute more uniformly, 2) defects created in prior processing steps to be removed, and 3) regions that have hyper-abrupt dopant concentrations to be formed.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 12, 2010
    Date of Patent: November 27, 2018
    Assignee: APPLIED MATERIALS, INC.
    Inventors: Paul Carey, Aaron Muir Hunter, Dean Jennings, Abhilash J. Mayur, Stephen Moffatt, William Schaffer, Timothy N. Thomas, Mark Yam
  • Patent number: 10109514
    Abstract: Embodiments of the present disclosure generally relate to methods and apparatus for visual lamp failure detection in a processing chamber, such as an RTP chamber. Visual feedback is facilitated through the use of a wide-angle lens positioned to view lamps within the process chamber. The wide-angle lens is positioned within a probe and secured using a spring in order to withstand high temperature processing. A camera coupled to the lens is adapted to capture an image of the lamps within the process chamber. The captured image of the lamps is then compared to a reference image to determine if the lamps are functioning as desired.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 14, 2017
    Date of Patent: October 23, 2018
    Assignee: APPLIED MATERIALS, INC.
    Inventors: Kim Vellore, Dinesh Kanawade, Stephen Moffatt, Aaron Miller, Leonid M. Tertitski, Norman L. Tam, Michael Liu, Colin Fox
  • Patent number: 10094618
    Abstract: A method and apparatus for annealing semiconductor substrates is disclosed. The apparatus has an annealing energy source and a substrate support, with a shield member disposed between the annealing energy source and the substrate support. The shield member is a substantially flat member having a dimension larger than a substrate processed on the substrate support, with a window covering a central opening in the substantially flat member. The central opening has a gas inlet portal and a gas outlet portal, each in fluid communication with a gas inlet plenum and gas outlet plenum, respectively. A connection member is disposed around the central opening and holds the window over the central opening. Connection openings in the connection member are in fluid communication with the gas inlet plenum and gas outlet plenum, respectively, through a gas inlet conduit and a gas outlet conduit formed through the connection member.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 1, 2016
    Date of Patent: October 9, 2018
    Inventors: Stephen Moffatt, Aaron Muir Hunter
  • Publication number: 20180283957
    Abstract: Embodiments of the present invention generally relate to apparatus for and methods of measuring and monitoring the temperature of a substrate having a 3D feature thereon. The apparatus include a light source for irradiating a substrate having a 3D feature thereon, a focus lens for gathering and focusing reflected light, and an emissometer for detecting the emissivity of the focused reflected light. The apparatus may also include a beam splitter and an imaging device. The imaging device provides a magnified image of the diffraction pattern of the reflected light. The method includes irradiating a substrate having a 3D feature thereon with light, and focusing reflected light with a focusing lens. The focused light is then directed to a sensor and the emissivity of the substrate is measured. The reflected light may also impinge upon an imaging device to generate a magnified image of the diffraction pattern of the reflected light.
    Type: Application
    Filed: March 5, 2018
    Publication date: October 4, 2018
    Inventors: Heng PAN, Matthew Scott ROGERS, Aaron Muir HUNTER, Stephen MOFFATT
  • Publication number: 20180274099
    Abstract: Embodiments of the disclosure provide a method and apparatus for depositing a layer on a substrate. In one embodiment, the method includes exposing a surface of the substrate disposed within a processing chamber to a fluid precursor, directing an electromagnetic radiation generated from a radiation source to a light scanning unit such that the electromagnetic radiation is deflected and scanned across the surface of the substrate upon which a material layer is to be formed, and initiating a deposition process with the electromagnetic radiation having a wavelength selected for photolytic dissociation of the fluid precursor to deposit the material layer onto the surface of the substrate. The radiation source may comprise a laser source, a bright light emitting diode (LED) source, or a thermal source. In one example, the radiation source is a fiber laser producing output in the ultraviolet (UV) wavelength range.
    Type: Application
    Filed: November 22, 2016
    Publication date: September 27, 2018
    Inventor: Stephen MOFFATT
  • Patent number: 10074538
    Abstract: Apparatus and methods of treating a substrate with an amorphous semiconductor layer, or a semiconductor layer having small crystals, to form large crystals in the substrate are described. A treatment area of the substrate is identified and melted using a progressive melting process of delivering pulsed energy to the treatment area. The treatment area is then recrystallized using a progressive crystallization process of delivering pulsed energy to the area. The pulsed energy delivered during the progressive crystallization process is selected to convert the small crystals into large crystals as the melted material freezes.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 19, 2016
    Date of Patent: September 11, 2018
    Assignee: APPLIED MATERIALS, INC.
    Inventors: Bruce E. Adams, Aaron Muir Hunter, Stephen Moffatt
  • Patent number: 10061208
    Abstract: A fine feature formation method and apparatus provide photon induced deposition, etch and thermal or photon based treatment in an area of less than the diameter or cross section of a STED depleted laser beam. At least two STED depleted beams are directed to a reaction location on a substrate where a beam overlap region having an area smaller than the excitation portion of the beams is formed. A reactant or reactants introduced to the reaction region is excited by the combined energy of the excitation portions of the two beams, but not excited outside of the overlap region of the two excitation portions of the beams. A reactant is caused to occur only in the overlap region. The overlap region may be less that 20 nm wide, and less than 1 nm in width, to enable the formation of substrate features, or the change in the substrate, in a small area.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 3, 2018
    Date of Patent: August 28, 2018
    Assignee: APPLIED MATERIALS, INC.
    Inventors: James Francis Mack, Stephen Moffatt
  • Publication number: 20180143537
    Abstract: A fine feature formation method and apparatus provide photon induced deposition, etch and thermal or photon based treatment in an area of less than the diameter or cross section of a STED depleted laser beam. At least two STED depleted beams are directed to a reaction location on a substrate where a beam overlap region having an area smaller than the excitation portion of the beams is formed. A reactant or reactants introduced to the reaction region is excited by the combined energy of the excitation portions of the two beams, but not excited outside of the overlap region of the two excitation portions of the beams. A reactant is caused to occur only in the overlap region. The overlap region may be less that 20 nm wide, and less than 1 nm in width, to enable the formation of substrate features, or the change in the substrate, in a small area.
    Type: Application
    Filed: January 3, 2018
    Publication date: May 24, 2018
    Inventors: James Francis MACK, Stephen MOFFATT
  • Patent number: 9953851
    Abstract: Embodiments described herein relate to apparatus and methods of thermal processing. More specifically, apparatus and methods described herein relate to laser thermal treatment of semiconductor substrates by increasing the uniformity of energy distribution in an image at a surface of a substrate.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 11, 2016
    Date of Patent: April 24, 2018
    Assignee: APPLIED MATERIALS, INC.
    Inventors: Jiping Li, Aaron Muir Hunter, Bruce E. Adams, Kim Vellore, Samuel C. Howells, Stephen Moffatt
  • Patent number: 9927622
    Abstract: Apparatus and methods for combining beams of amplified radiation are disclosed. A beam combiner has a collimating optic positioned to receive a plurality of coherent radiation beams at a constant angle of incidence with respect to an optical axis of the collimating optic. The respective angles of incidence may also be different in some embodiments. The collimating optic has an optical property that collimates the beams. The optical property may be refractive or reflective, or a combination thereof. A collecting optic may also be provided to direct the plurality of beams to the collimating optic. The beam combiner may be used in a thermal processing apparatus to combine more than two beams of coherent amplified radiation, such as lasers, into a single beam.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 22, 2016
    Date of Patent: March 27, 2018
    Assignee: APPLIED MATERIALS, INC.
    Inventors: Stephen Moffatt, Douglas E. Holmgren, Samuel C. Howells, Edric Tong, Bruce E. Adams, Jiping Li, Aaron Muir Hunter
  • Patent number: 9908200
    Abstract: The present invention generally relates to an optical system that is able to reliably deliver a uniform amount of energy across an anneal region contained on a surface of a substrate. The optical system is adapted to deliver, or project, a uniform amount of energy having a desired two-dimensional shape on a desired region on the surface of the substrate. Typically, the anneal regions may be square or rectangular in shape. Generally, the optical system and methods of the present invention are used to preferentially anneal one or more regions found within the anneal regions by delivering enough energy to cause the one or more regions to re-melt and solidify.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 8, 2014
    Date of Patent: March 6, 2018
    Assignee: APPLIED MATERIALS, INC.
    Inventors: Bruce E. Adams, Samuel C. Howells, Dean Jennings, Jiping Li, Timothy N. Thomas, Stephen Moffatt
  • Patent number: 9909925
    Abstract: Embodiments of the present invention generally relate to apparatus for and methods of measuring and monitoring the temperature of a substrate having a 3D feature thereon. The apparatus include a light source for irradiating a substrate having a 3D feature thereon, a focus lens for gathering and focusing reflected light, and an emissometer for detecting the emissivity of the focused reflected light. The apparatus may also include a beam splitter and an imaging device. The imaging device provides a magnified image of the diffraction pattern of the reflected light. The method includes irradiating a substrate having a 3D feature thereon with light, and focusing reflected light with a focusing lens. The focused light is then directed to a sensor and the emissivity of the substrate is measured. The reflected light may also impinge upon an imaging device to generate a magnified image of the diffraction pattern of the reflected light.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 8, 2012
    Date of Patent: March 6, 2018
    Assignee: APPLIED MATERIALS, INC.
    Inventors: Heng Pan, Matthew Scott Rogers, Aaron Muir Hunter, Stephen Moffatt
  • Patent number: 9904069
    Abstract: Embodiments described herein provide apparatus and methods for processing semiconductor substrates with uniform laser energy. A laser pulse or beam is directed to a spatial homogenizer, which may be a plurality of lenses arranged along a plane perpendicular to the optical path of the laser energy, an example being a microlens array. The spatially uniformized energy produced by the spatial homogenizer is then directed to a refractive medium that has a plurality of thicknesses. Each thickness of the plurality of thicknesses is different from the other thicknesses by at least the coherence length of the laser energy.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 11, 2016
    Date of Patent: February 27, 2018
    Assignee: APPLIED MATERIALS, INC.
    Inventor: Stephen Moffatt
  • Patent number: 9869938
    Abstract: A fine feature formation method and apparatus provide photon induced deposition, etch and thermal or photon based treatment in an area of less than the diameter or cross section of a STED depleted laser beam. At least two STED depleted beams are directed to a reaction location on a substrate where a beam overlap region having an area smaller than the excitation portion of the beams is formed. A reactant or reactants introduced to the reaction region is excited by the combined energy of the excitation portions of the two beams, but not excited outside of the overlap region of the two excitation portions of the beams. A reactant is caused to occur only in the overlap region. The overlap region may be less that 20 nm wide, and less than 1 nm in width, to enable the formation of substrate features, or the change in the substrate, in a small area.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 5, 2014
    Date of Patent: January 16, 2018
    Assignee: APPLIED MATERIALS, INC.
    Inventors: James Francis Mack, Stephen Moffatt
  • Publication number: 20170365288
    Abstract: Methods and apparatus for forming substrates having magnetically patterned surfaces is provided. A magnetic layer comprising one or more materials having magnetic properties is formed on a substrate. The magnetic layer is subjected to a patterning process in which selected portions of the surface of the magnetic layer are altered such that the altered portions have different magnetic properties from the non-altered portions without changing the topography of the substrate. A protective layer and a lubricant layer are deposited over the patterned magnetic layer. The patterning is accomplished through a number of processes that expose substrates to energy of varying forms. Apparatus and methods disclosed herein enable processing of two major surfaces of a substrate simultaneously, or sequentially by flipping. In some embodiments, magnetic properties of the substrate surface may be uniformly altered by plasma exposure and then selectively restored by exposure to patterned energy.
    Type: Application
    Filed: June 19, 2017
    Publication date: December 21, 2017
    Inventors: Majeed A. Foad, Jacob Newman, Jose Antonio Marin, Daniel J. Hoffman, Stephen Moffatt, Steven Verhaverbeke