Patents by Inventor Tom J. John

Tom J. John 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: 10615174
    Abstract: A method comprises forming material to be etched over a substrate. An etch mask comprising a silicon nitride-comprising region is formed elevationally over the material. The etch mask comprises an elevationally-extending mask opening in the silicon nitride-comprising region that has a minimum horizontal open dimension that is greater in an elevationally-innermost portion of the region than in an elevationally-outermost portion of the region. The elevationally-outermost portion has a greater etch rate in at least one of HF and H3PO4 than does the elevationally-innermost portion. The etch mask is used as a mask while etching an elevationally-extending mask opening into the material. The silicon nitride-comprising region is exposed to at least one of HF and H3PO4 to increase the minimum horizontal open dimension in the elevationally-outermost portion to a greater degree than increase, if any, in the minimum horizontal open dimension in the elevationally-innermost portion.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 7, 2019
    Date of Patent: April 7, 2020
    Assignee: Micron Technology, Inc.
    Inventors: Fei Wang, Tom J. John, Kunal Shrotri, Anish A. Khandekar, Aaron R. Wilson, John D. Hopkins, Derek F. Lundberg
  • Patent number: 10580782
    Abstract: A method of forming an array of elevationally-extending strings of memory cells comprises forming a stack comprising alternating insulative tiers and wordline tiers. A select gate tier is above an upper of the insulative tiers. Channel openings extend through the alternating tiers and the select gate tier. Charge-storage material is formed within the channel openings elevationally along the alternating tiers and the select gate tier. Sacrificial material is formed within the channel openings laterally over the charge-storage material that is laterally over the select gate tier and that is laterally over the alternating tiers. Elevationally-outer portions of each of the charge-storage material and the sacrificial material that are within the channel openings are etched. After such etching, the sacrificial material is removed from the channel openings.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 23, 2018
    Date of Patent: March 3, 2020
    Assignee: Micron Technology, Inc.
    Inventors: Wei Yeeng Ng, Ian Laboriante, Joseph Neil Greeley, Tom J. John, Ho Yee Hui
  • Publication number: 20190312056
    Abstract: A method comprises forming material to be etched over a substrate. An etch mask comprising a silicon nitride-comprising region is formed elevationally over the material. The etch mask comprises an elevationally-extending mask opening in the silicon nitride-comprising region that has a minimum horizontal open dimension that is greater in an elevationally-innermost portion of the region than in an elevationally-outermost portion of the region. The elevationally-outermost portion has a greater etch rate in at least one of HF and H3PO4 than does the elevationally-innermost portion. The etch mask is used as a mask while etching an elevationally-extending mask opening into the material. The silicon nitride-comprising region is exposed to at least one of HF and H3PO4 to increase the minimum horizontal open dimension in the elevationally-outermost portion to a greater degree than increase, if any, in the minimum horizontal open dimension in the elevationally-innermost portion.
    Type: Application
    Filed: June 7, 2019
    Publication date: October 10, 2019
    Applicant: Micron Technology, Inc.
    Inventors: Fei Wang, Tom J. John, Kunal Shrotri, Anish A. Khandekar, Aaron R. Wilson, John D. Hopkins, Derek F. Lundberg
  • Patent number: 10381377
    Abstract: A method comprises forming material to be etched over a substrate. An etch mask comprising a silicon nitride-comprising region is formed elevationally over the material. The etch mask comprises an elevationally-extending mask opening in the silicon nitride-comprising region that has a minimum horizontal open dimension that is greater in an elevationally-innermost portion of the region than in an elevationally-outermost portion of the region. The elevationally-outermost portion has a greater etch rate in at least one of HF and H3PO4 than does the elevationally-innermost portion. The etch mask is used as a mask while etching an elevationally-extending mask opening into the material. The silicon nitride-comprising region is exposed to at least one of HF and H3PO4 to increase the minimum horizontal open dimension in the elevationally-outermost portion to a greater degree than increase, if any, in the minimum horizontal open dimension in the elevationally-innermost portion.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 20, 2018
    Date of Patent: August 13, 2019
    Assignee: Micron Technology, Inc.
    Inventors: Fei Wang, Tom J. John, Kunal Shrotri, Anish A. Khandekar, Aaron R. Wilson, John D. Hopkins, Derek F. Lundberg
  • Publication number: 20190206884
    Abstract: A method of forming an array of elevationally-extending strings of memory cells comprises forming a stack comprising alternating insulative tiers and wordline tiers. A select gate tier is above an upper of the insulative tiers. Channel openings extend through the alternating tiers and the select gate tier. Charge-storage material is formed within the channel openings elevationally along the alternating tiers and the select gate tier. Sacrificial material is formed within the channel openings laterally over the charge-storage material that is laterally over the select gate tier and that is laterally over the alternating tiers. Elevationally-outer portions of each of the charge-storage material and the sacrificial material that are within the channel openings are etched. After such etching, the sacrificial material is removed from the channel openings.
    Type: Application
    Filed: February 23, 2018
    Publication date: July 4, 2019
    Applicant: Micron Technology, Inc
    Inventors: Wei Yeeng Ng, Ian Laboriante, Joseph Neil Greeley, Tom J. John, Ho Yee Hui
  • Publication number: 20180331120
    Abstract: A method comprises forming material to be etched over a substrate. An etch mask comprising a silicon nitride-comprising region is formed elevationally over the material. The etch mask comprises an elevationally-extending mask opening in the silicon nitride-comprising region that has a minimum horizontal open dimension that is greater in an elevationally-innermost portion of the region than in an elevationally-outermost portion of the region. The elevationally-outermost portion has a greater etch rate in at least one of HF and H3PO4 than does the elevationally-innermost portion. The etch mask is used as a mask while etching an elevationally-extending mask opening into the material. The silicon nitride-comprising region is exposed to at least one of HF and H3PO4 to increase the minimum horizontal open dimension in the elevationally-outermost portion to a greater degree than increase, if any, in the minimum horizontal open dimension in the elevationally-innermost portion.
    Type: Application
    Filed: July 20, 2018
    Publication date: November 15, 2018
    Applicant: Micron Technology, Inc.
    Inventors: Fei Wang, Tom J. John, Kunal Shrotri, Anish A. Khandekar, Aaron R. Wilson, John D. Hopkins, Derek F. Lundberg
  • Patent number: 10121799
    Abstract: A method comprises forming material to be etched over a substrate. An etch mask comprising a silicon nitride-comprising region is formed elevationally over the material. The etch mask comprises an elevationally-extending mask opening in the silicon nitride-comprising region that has a minimum horizontal open dimension that is greater in an elevationally-innermost portion of the region than in an elevationally-outermost portion of the region. The elevationally-outermost portion has a greater etch rate in at least one of HF and H3PO4 than does the elevationally-innermost portion. The etch mask is used as a mask while etching an elevationally-extending mask opening into the material. The silicon nitride-comprising region is exposed to at least one of HF and H3PO4 to increase the minimum horizontal open dimension in the elevationally-outermost portion to a greater degree than increase, if any, in the minimum horizontal open dimension in the elevationally-innermost portion.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 21, 2017
    Date of Patent: November 6, 2018
    Assignee: Micron Technology, Inc.
    Inventors: Fei Wang, Tom J. John, Kunal Shrotri, Anish A. Khandekar, Aaron R. Wilson, John D. Hopkins, Derek F. Lundberg
  • Publication number: 20180114795
    Abstract: A method comprises forming material to be etched over a substrate. An etch mask comprising a silicon nitride-comprising region is formed elevationally over the material. The etch mask comprises an elevationally-extending mask opening in the silicon nitride-comprising region that has a minimum horizontal open dimension that is greater in an elevationally-innermost portion of the region than in an elevationally-outermost portion of the region. The elevationally-outermost portion has a greater etch rate in at least one of HF and H3PO4 than does the elevationally-innermost portion. The etch mask is used as a mask while etching an elevationally-extending mask opening into the material. The silicon nitride-comprising region is exposed to at least one of HF and H3PO4 to increase the minimum horizontal open dimension in the elevationally-outermost portion to a greater degree than increase, if any, in the minimum horizontal open dimension in the elevationally-innermost portion.
    Type: Application
    Filed: December 21, 2017
    Publication date: April 26, 2018
    Inventors: Fei Wang, Tom J. John, Kunal Shrotri, Anish A. Khandekar, Aaron R. Wilson, John D. Hopkins, Derek F. Lundberg
  • Patent number: 9893083
    Abstract: A method comprises forming material to be etched over a substrate. An etch mask comprising a silicon nitride-comprising region is formed elevationally over the material. The etch mask comprises an elevationally-extending mask opening in the silicon nitride-comprising region that has a minimum horizontal open dimension that is greater in an elevationally-innermost portion of the region than in an elevationally-outermost portion of the region. The elevationally-outermost portion has a greater etch rate in at least one of HF and H3PO4 than does the elevationally-innermost portion. The etch mask is used as a mask while etching an elevationally-extending mask opening into the material. The silicon nitride-comprising region is exposed to at least one of HF and H3PO4 to increase the minimum horizontal open dimension in the elevationally-outermost portion to a greater degree than increase, if any, in the minimum horizontal open dimension in the elevationally-innermost portion.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 13, 2016
    Date of Patent: February 13, 2018
    Assignee: Micron Technology, Inc.
    Inventors: Fei Wang, Tom J. John, Kunal Shrotri, Anish A. Khandekar, Aaron R. Wilson, John D. Hopkins, Derek F. Lundberg