Microwave Excitation Patents (Class 204/298.38)
  • Patent number: 9750120
    Abstract: The disclosure includes a coaxial microwave applicator for plasma production, including a coaxial tube formed by a central core and an outer conductor separated from the central core by an annular space allowing propagation of microwaves. The applicator includes: a cylindrical permanent magnet disposed at the end of the central core; and at least one annular permanent magnet disposed at the end of the outer conductor, all of the magnets disposed at the end of the coaxial tube having the same direction of magnetization. The magnetization of the magnets forms a magnetic field suitable for generating, in a zone away from the end of the applicator, an electronic cyclotronic resonance coupling with the electric microwave field of the applicator. The external radius and the magnetization of the annular magnet are selected such that the magnetic field lines generated by the magnets pass through the coupling zone in a direction substantially parallel to the axis of the applicator.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 10, 2013
    Date of Patent: August 29, 2017
    Assignees: Universite Joseph Fourier—Grenoble 1
    Inventors: Ana Lacoste, Jacques Pelletier
  • Publication number: 20140094035
    Abstract: Techniques, systems, and apparatuses for performing carbon gap-fill in semiconductor wafers are provided. The techniques may include performing deposition-etching operations in a cyclic fashion to fill a gap feature with carbon. A plurality of such deposition-etching cycles may be performed, resulting in a localized build-up of carbon film on the top surface of the semiconductor wafer near the gap feature. An ashing operation may then be performed to preferentially remove the built-up material from the top surface of the semiconductor wafer. Further groups of deposition-etching cycles may then be performed, interspersed with further ashing cycles.
    Type: Application
    Filed: May 17, 2013
    Publication date: April 3, 2014
    Applicant: Novellus Systems, Inc.
    Inventors: Chunhai Ji, Sirish Reddy, Tuo Wang, Mandyam Sriram
  • Patent number: 8653482
    Abstract: Disclosed is a method of freezing a body or a portion thereof. The method comprises exposing at least a part of the body to a coolant having a temperature below the freezing point of the body, and at the same time operating an electromagnetic heater, as to maintain the at least part of the body at a temperature above its freezing point; and reducing the electromagnetic heating to allow the at least a part of the body to freeze. The electromagnetic heater comprises a resonator, and the heated part of the body is heated inside the resonator.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 29, 2007
    Date of Patent: February 18, 2014
    Assignee: Goji Limited
    Inventor: Eran Ben-Shmuel
  • Patent number: 8349156
    Abstract: Disclosed invention uses a coaxial microwave antenna to enhance ionization in PVD or IPVD. The coaxial microwave antenna increases plasma density homogeneously adjacent to a sputtering cathode or target that is subjected to a power supply. The coaxial microwave source generates electromagnetic waves in a transverse electromagnetic (TEM) mode. The invention also uses a magnetron proximate the sputtering cathode or target to further enhance the sputtering. Furthermore, for high utilization of expensive target materials, a target can rotate to improve the utilization efficiency. The target comprises dielectric materials, metals, or semiconductors. The target also has a cross section being substantially symmetric about a central axis that the target rotates around. The target may have a substantially circular or annular a cross section.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 14, 2008
    Date of Patent: January 8, 2013
    Assignee: Applied Materials, Inc.
    Inventors: Michael W. Stowell, Richard Newcomb
  • Publication number: 20110209995
    Abstract: Apparatus and methods for performing plasma processing on a wafer supported on a pedestal are provided. The apparatus can include a pedestal on which the wafer can be supported, a variable capacitor having a variable capacitance, a motor attached to the variable capacitor which varies the capacitance of the variable capacitor, a motor controller connected to the motor that causes the motor to rotate, and an output from the variable capacitor connected to the pedestal. A desired state of the variable capacitor is associated with a process recipe in a process controller. When the process recipe is executed the variable capacitor is placed in the desired state.
    Type: Application
    Filed: June 25, 2010
    Publication date: September 1, 2011
    Applicant: Applied Materials, Inc.
    Inventors: Muhammad M. Rasheed, Ronald D. DeDore, Michael S. Cox, Keith A. Miller, Donny Young, John C. Forster, Adolph M. Allen, Lara Hawrylchak
  • Patent number: 7998307
    Abstract: A plasma processing system is described for generating plasma with a ballistic electron beam using a surface wave plasma (SWP) source, such as a radial line slot antenna (RLSA) during semiconductor device fabrication. The antenna comprises a resonator plate having a partially open, electrically conductive layer coupled to a surface of the resonator plate. For example, the electrically conductive layer is formed at an interface between the resonator plate and the plasma, and a direct current (DC) voltage is applied to the electrically conductive layer.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 12, 2006
    Date of Patent: August 16, 2011
    Assignee: Tokyo Electron Limited
    Inventors: Lee Chen, Paul Moroz
  • Patent number: 7895971
    Abstract: A microwave plasma processing apparatus which easily ensures uniformity and stability of plasma in response to changes of process conditions and the like. The microwave plasma processing apparatus generates plasma of a process gas in a chamber by microwave and performs plasma processing to a work to be processed by using the plasma. On a plate composed of a conductor covering the outer circumference of a microwave transmitting board, two or more holes for propagating microwave from an edge part of the microwave transmitting board to an inner part of the plate are formed. Volume adjusting mechanisms and adjust the volume of the holes to adjust impedance of each unit when the microwave transmitting board is divided into individual units to which each of the holes belongs, and electric field distribution of the microwave transmitting board is controlled.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 6, 2005
    Date of Patent: March 1, 2011
    Assignee: Tokyo Electron Limited
    Inventors: Caizhong Tian, Toshihisa Nozawa
  • Publication number: 20100206720
    Abstract: A method of producing inorganic nanoparticles includes: (a) providing a layered structure including a substrate and an inorganic layer; (b) disposing the layered structure in a vacuum chamber, vacuuming the vacuum chamber, and introducing a gas into the vacuum chamber; and (c) applying microwave energy to the gas to produce a microwave plasma of the gas within the vacuum chamber so that the inorganic layer is acted by the microwave plasma and formed into a plurality of inorganic nanoparticles on the substrate. A system for producing the nanoparticles is also disclosed.
    Type: Application
    Filed: May 22, 2009
    Publication date: August 19, 2010
    Inventors: Kuan-Jiuh Lin, Chuen-Yuan Hsu
  • Patent number: 7767926
    Abstract: A method and system for the dry development of a multi-layer mask is described. A first passivation gas comprises as an incipient ingredient a hydrocarbon gas, while a second passivation gas comprises as an incipient ingredient an oxygen-containing gas.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 29, 2006
    Date of Patent: August 3, 2010
    Assignee: Tokyo Electron Limited
    Inventor: Vaidyanathan Balasubramaniam
  • Patent number: 7728251
    Abstract: In a plasma processing apparatus, electromagnetic waves are radiated from slots of waveguides into a processing chamber via dielectric windows that are supported on beams, thereby generating a plasma. A substrate, which is an object of processing, is processed by the generated plasma. Dielectric plates are attached to those surfaces of the beams, which are opposed to the processing chamber. The thickness of each dielectric plate is set at ½ or more of the intra-dielectric wavelength of the electromagnetic waves. Using the plasma processing apparatus, a large-area processing can uniformly be performed.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 27, 2005
    Date of Patent: June 1, 2010
    Assignee: Sharp Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventors: Tetsuya Ide, Atsushi Sasaki, Kazufumi Azuma, Yukihiko Nakata
  • Patent number: 7723637
    Abstract: The purpose of the present invention is to provide homogeneous plasma in longitudinal direction of a plasma processing apparatus applicable to multiple processes. A microwave waveguide 10 with a plurality of variable couplers 12 is placed in a vacuum chamber 21. The microwave generated in a microwave generator 23 is introduced into the microwave waveguide 10 via a waveguide 24. And a plasma 22 in the chamber 21 is generated by the microwave 25. Intensity distribution of the microwave 25 in the microwave waveguide 10 can be varied by moving a plurality of variable couplers 12 individually upward or downward as shown by two-way arrow.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 3, 2006
    Date of Patent: May 25, 2010
    Assignees: Tohoku University, Future Vision Inc.
    Inventors: Tadahiro Ohmi, Masaki Hirayama, Takahiro Horiguchi
  • Patent number: 7708859
    Abstract: 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 gas distribution system can include a gas supply section, a flow control section and a switching section. The gas supply section provides first and second gases, typically gas mixtures, to the flow control section, which controls the flows of the first and second gases to the chamber. The chamber can include multiple zones, and the flow control section can supply the first and second gases to the multiple zones at desired flow ratios of the gases. The gas distribution system can continuously supply the first and second gases to the switching section and the switching section is operable to switch the flows of the first and second gases, such that one of the first and second process gases is supplied to the chamber while the other of the first and second gases is supplied to a by-pass line, and then to switch the gas flows.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 30, 2004
    Date of Patent: May 4, 2010
    Assignee: Lam Research Corporation
    Inventors: Zhisong Huang, Jose Tong Sam, Eric H. Lenz, Rajinder Dhindsa, Reza Sadjadi
  • Patent number: 7491908
    Abstract: A plasma processing device comprises a chamber capable of maintaining an atmosphere depressurized less than atmospheric pressure, a transfer pipe connected to the chamber, a gas introduction mechanism for introducing a gas into the transfer pipe, and a microwave supply source for introducing a microwave from outside to inside of the transfer pipe. The plasma processing device can form a plasma of the gas in the transfer pipe and perform plasma processing on a workpiece placed in the chamber. The transfer pipe is connected to have an opening in an inner wall of the chamber, the inner wall being generally perpendicular to a major surface of the workpiece. The workpiece is not provided on direct line of sight from the plasma.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 6, 2004
    Date of Patent: February 17, 2009
    Assignee: Shibaura Mechatronics Corporation
    Inventor: Yoshinori Iino
  • Patent number: 7485827
    Abstract: A plasma generator comprising a propagation chamber propagating an electromagnetic radiation, and a plasma-generating chamber associated with the propagation chamber; said propagation chamber has a passage region of increasing width on moving away from the entrance region for insertion of the electromagnetic radiation into the propagation chamber. The passage region enables an at least partial passage of the electromagnetic radiation towards the plasma-generating chamber.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 21, 2006
    Date of Patent: February 3, 2009
    Assignee: Alter S.R.L.
    Inventors: Marco Garuti, Cristina Leonelli, Paolo Veronesi
  • Patent number: 7432468
    Abstract: A microwave plasma processing apparatus 100 allows microwaves, passed through a plurality of slots 37, to be transmitted through a plurality of dielectric parts 31 supported by beams 26, raises a gas to plasma with the transmitted microwaves and processes a substrate G with the plasma. The beams 26 are made to project out toward the substrate so as to ensure that the plasma electron density Ne around the ends of the beams 26 is equal to or greater than a cutoff plasma electron density Nc. The projecting beams 26 inhibits interference attributable to surface waves generated with the electrical field energy of microwaves transmitted through adjacent dielectric parts 31 and interference attributable to electrons and ions propagated through the plasma generated under a given dielectric part 31 to reach the plasma generated under an adjacent dielectric part as the plasma generated under the individual dielectric parts 31 is diffused.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 30, 2007
    Date of Patent: October 7, 2008
    Assignees: Tokyo Electron Limited, Tohoku University
    Inventors: Shinsuke Oka, Takahiro Horiguchi, Kazuaki Nishimura, Masayuki Kitamura, Tadahiro Ohmi, Masaki Hirayama
  • Patent number: 7399943
    Abstract: A plasma reactor includes a vacuum chamber including a sidewall, a ceiling and a wafer support pedestal near a floor of the chamber, and a vacuum pump coupled to the chamber. A process gas inlet is coupled to the chamber and a process gas source coupled to the process gas inlet. The reactor further includes a metal sputter target at the ceiling, a high voltage D.C. source coupled to the sputter target, an RF plasma source power generator coupled to the wafer support pedestal and having a frequency suitable for exciting kinetic electrons, and an RF plasma bias power generator coupled to the wafer support pedestal and having a frequency suitable for coupling energy to plasma ions.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 3, 2005
    Date of Patent: July 15, 2008
    Assignee: Applied Materials, Inc.
    Inventors: Karl M. Brown, John Pipitone, Vineet Mehta
  • Patent number: 7400096
    Abstract: An all permanent magnet Electron Cyclotron Resonance, large diameter (e.g., 40 cm) plasma source suitable for ion/plasma processing or electric propulsion, is capable of producing uniform ion current densities at its exit plane at very low power (e.g., below 200 W), and is electrodeless to avoid sputtering or contamination issues. Microwave input power is efficiently coupled with an ionizing gas without using a dielectric microwave window and without developing a throat plasma by providing a ferromagnetic cylindrical chamber wall with a conical end narrowing to an axial entrance hole for microwaves supplied on-axis from an open-ended waveguide. Permanent magnet rings are attached inside the wall with alternating polarities against the wall. An entrance magnet ring surrounding the entrance hole has a ferromagnetic pole piece that extends into the chamber from the entrance hole to a continuing second face that extends radially across an inner pole of the entrance magnet ring.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 19, 2004
    Date of Patent: July 15, 2008
    Assignee: The United States of America as represented by the Administrator of The National Aeronautics and Space Administration
    Inventors: John Foster, Michael Patterson
  • Patent number: 7354504
    Abstract: A dielectric profiler establishes a dielectric profile of microwave characteristics for identifying, sterilizing or inactivating a target material prior to performing a microwave irradiation event to sterilize or inactivate the target material.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 18, 2006
    Date of Patent: April 8, 2008
    Assignee: Frontier Engineering LLC
    Inventor: David R. Wilson
  • Patent number: 7311796
    Abstract: A plasma processing apparatus comprises: a chamber 12 having at least one opening and for generating plasma; a dielectric member 14 provided to cover the opening air-tightly; at least one wave guide 16 provided in the exterior of the chamber such that the one end side opposes the dielectric member; an electromagnetic wave source 20 provided on the other end side of the wave guide; a plurality of holes 38, 40, 42, 44, 46 provided on a surface opposing the dielectric member of the wave guide; and hole area adjusting means 18 provided in at least one of the above-mentioned holes so as to adjust the opening area of the hole.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 8, 2003
    Date of Patent: December 25, 2007
    Assignee: Kabushiki Kaisha Ekisho Sentan Gijutsu Kaihatsu Center
    Inventors: Masashi Goto, Yukihiko Nakata, Kazufumi Azuma, Tetsuya Okamoto
  • Patent number: 7189939
    Abstract: A portable microwave plasma discharge unit receives microwaves and a gas flow via a supply line. The portable microwave plasma discharge unit generates plasma from the gas flow and the received microwaves. The portable microwave plasma discharge unit includes a gas flow tube made of a conducting and/or dielectric material and a rod-shaped conductor that is axially disposed in the gas flow tube. The rod-shaped conductor has an end configured to contact a microwave supply conductor of the supply line to receive microwaves and a tapered tip positioned adjacent the outlet portion of the gas flow tube. The tapered tip is configured to focus the microwaves received from the microwave supply conductor to generate plasma from the gas flow.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 1, 2004
    Date of Patent: March 13, 2007
    Assignees: Noritsu Koki Co., Ltd., Amarante Technologies, Inc.
    Inventors: Sang Hun Lee, Jay Joongsoo Kim
  • Patent number: 7141756
    Abstract: A microwave plasma processing apparatus is disclosed that enables fast and easy plasma ignition at the pressure for plasma processing In the microwave plasma processing apparatus, a plasma ignition facilitating unit is provided to facilitate plasma ignition induced by a microwave. The plasma ignition facilitating unit includes a deuterium lamp that emits vacuum ultraviolet rays, and a transmission window that allows the vacuum ultraviolet rays to penetrate and irradiate a plasma excitation space. The transmission window is a convex lens, and focuses the vacuum ultraviolet rays to enhance ionization of the plasma excitation gas. With such a configuration, it is possible to induce plasma ignition easily and quickly.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 28, 2002
    Date of Patent: November 28, 2006
    Assignees: Tokyo Electron Limited
    Inventors: Tadahiro Ohmi, Masaki Hirayama, Shigetoshi Sugawa, Tetsuya Goto
  • Patent number: 7071442
    Abstract: A plasma processing apparatus includes a processing container 53, a mounting table 61 arranged in the processing container 53 to support a wafer W, a sealing plate 55 opposed to the wafer W supported by the mounting table 61, an annular antenna 73 arranged on the sealing plate 55 and consisting of an annular waveguide to introduce a microwave into the processing container 53 through the sealing plate 55, the annular antenna 73 being arranged so that a plane containing an annular waveguide path defined by the annular waveguide is generally parallel with the sealing plate 55, a directional coupler 79 arranged on the periphery of the annular antenna 73, a propagation waveguide 81 connected to the directional coupler 79 and a microwave oscillator 83 connected to the propagation waveguide 81. “Accordingly, it is possible to form an uniform microwave in the antenna, so that an uniform plasma can be produced in the processing container”.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 13, 2004
    Date of Patent: July 4, 2006
    Assignee: Tokyo Electron Limited
    Inventors: Nobuo Ishii, Kibatsu Shinohara
  • Patent number: 6951821
    Abstract: A processing system and method for chemically treating a substrate, wherein the processing system comprises a temperature controlled chemical treatment chamber, and an independently temperature controlled substrate holder for supporting a substrate for chemical treatment. The substrate holder is thermally insulated from the chemical treatment chamber. The substrate is exposed to a gaseous chemistry, without plasma, under controlled conditions including wall temperature, surface temperature and gas pressure. The chemical treatment of the substrate chemically alters exposed surfaces on the substrate.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 12, 2003
    Date of Patent: October 4, 2005
    Assignee: Tokyo Electron Limited
    Inventors: Thomas Hamelin, Jay Wallace, Arthur Laflamme, Jr.
  • Patent number: 6891123
    Abstract: Method and an apparatus for igniting plasma in a semiconductor manufacturing apparatus are disclosed. An example plasma ignition method and apparatus sets a predetermined pressure, source power and bias power of a chamber and flows a predetermined flow rate of CHF3 and Ar gases into the chamber, introduces a predetermined flow rate of Cl2 gas into the chamber, completes the supply of Cl2 gas, and ignites plasma.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 30, 2003
    Date of Patent: May 10, 2005
    Assignee: DongbuAnam Semiconductor Inc.
    Inventor: Sang Hun Oh
  • Patent number: 6870123
    Abstract: In order to more accurately control the radiation characteristics of microwaves to improve the controllability of processing in radial and circumferential directions of an article, there are disclosed a microwave applicator and a plasma processing apparatus using the applicator, which comprise a circular waveguide having a surface provided with a plurality of slots for radiating microwaves, wherein the centers of the plurality of slots are offset in a direction parallel to the surface with respect to the center of the circular waveguide.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 26, 2001
    Date of Patent: March 22, 2005
    Assignee: Canon Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventors: Nobumasa Suzuki, Shigenobu Yokoshima
  • Patent number: 6847003
    Abstract: A plasma processing apparatus includes a processing container 53, a mounting table 61 arranged in the processing container 53 to support a wafer W, a sealing plate 55 opposed to the wafer W supported by the mounting table 61, an annular antenna 73 arranged on the sealing plate 55 and consisting of an annular waveguide to introduce a microwave into the processing container 53 through the sealing plate 55, the annular antenna 73 being arranged so that a plane containing an annular waveguide path defined by the annular waveguide is generally parallel with the sealing plate 55, a directional coupler 79 arranged on the periphery of the annular antenna 73, a propagation waveguide 81 connected to the directional coupler 79 and a microwave oscillator 83 connected to the propagation waveguide 81. Accordingly, it is possible to form an uniform microwave in the antenna, so that an uniform plasma can be produced in the processing container.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 12, 2001
    Date of Patent: January 25, 2005
    Assignee: Tokyo Electron Limited
    Inventors: Nobuo Ishii, Kibatsu Shinohara
  • Patent number: 6823816
    Abstract: An electromagnetic wave absorber (4) of a material that causes a large dielectric or magnetic loss is disposed so as to surround a region between a high-frequency wave transmitting window (3) and an antenna (32) to suppress the formation of a sanding wave by suppressing the reflection of microwaves.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 18, 2003
    Date of Patent: November 30, 2004
    Assignees: Tokyo Electron Limited, Makoto Ando
    Inventors: Nobuo Ishii, Yasuyoshi Yasaka
  • Patent number: 6818852
    Abstract: A placement stage (24) on which a semiconductor wafer (W) is place is provided within a processing container (22). A microwave is generated by a microwave generator (76), and the microwave is introduced into a process container (22) through a flat antenna member (66). The flat antenna member (66) has a plurality of slots (84) arranged along a plurality of circumferences, and the plurality of circumferences are non-concentric to each other. A distribution of plasma density in the flat antenna member (66) in a radial direction is uniform.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 14, 2003
    Date of Patent: November 16, 2004
    Assignees: Tokyo Electron Limited
    Inventors: Tadahiro Ohmi, Masaki Hirayama, Tetsuya Goto
  • Patent number: 6805779
    Abstract: The present invention relates to a plasma generator that generates a plasma with a multi-step ionization process. The plasma generator includes an excited atom source that generates excited atoms from ground state atoms supplied by a feed gas source. A plasma chamber confines a volume of excited atoms generated by the excited atom source. An energy source is coupled to the volume of excited atoms confined by the plasma chamber. The energy source raises an energy of excited atoms in the volume of excited atoms so that at least a portion of the excited atoms in the volume of excited atoms is ionized, thereby generating a plasma with a multi-step ionization process.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 21, 2003
    Date of Patent: October 19, 2004
    Assignee: Zond, Inc.
    Inventor: Roman Chistyakov
  • Patent number: 6753496
    Abstract: On one side of a microwave entrance window that is exposed to the atmosphere, a slot plate having slots and a resonant unit are provided. The slot plate and the resonant unit are integrally placed to be slidable by linear guides with respect to a process chamber. In this way, a plasma processing apparatus can be provided that performs a highly uniform plasma process and is excellent in terms of plasma generation property.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 7, 2001
    Date of Patent: June 22, 2004
    Assignees: Sharp Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventors: Takamitsu Tadera, Tatsushi Yamamoto, Masaki Hirayama, Tadahiro Ohmi
  • Patent number: 6696662
    Abstract: Plasma processing is carried out at pressures of about atmospheric pressure, at pressures below atmospheric pressure, or at pressures above atmospheric pressure. The plasmas are generated using a RF power source and a rectangular waveguide. The plasmas can be used for applications such as materials processing and carrying out chemical reactions.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 25, 2001
    Date of Patent: February 24, 2004
    Assignee: Advanced Energy Industries, Inc.
    Inventors: Russell F. Jewett, Jason F. Elston
  • Patent number: 6657151
    Abstract: To uniformly generate plasma using microwaves in a processing vessel. To first to fourth feeding sections 141a to 141d which are evenly placed on the same plane perpendicular to an axial direction of a main coaxial line 123, four microwaves shifted in phase by 0°, 90°, 180°, and 270° are fed from first to fourth microwave supply sections 142a to 142d.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 13, 2001
    Date of Patent: December 2, 2003
    Assignees: Tokyo Electron Limited, Nihon Koshuha Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Nobuo Ishii, Kibatsu Shinohara
  • Publication number: 20030209424
    Abstract: A method of manufacturing a coated workpiece utilizes a target made of an alloy which is substantially a one phase. Coating is achieved by cathodic arc evaporation of the target in an oxygen atmosphere.
    Type: Application
    Filed: June 17, 2003
    Publication date: November 13, 2003
    Applicant: Unaxis Balzers Aktiengesellschaft
    Inventors: Hans Brandle, Erich Bergmann
  • Patent number: 6622650
    Abstract: A plasma processing system may include a vacuum vessel, a substrate table arranged in the vacuum vessel, and a radio-frequency power supply system for generating high-frequency waves. A waveguide may be provided for guiding high-frequency waves into the vacuum vessel, and a dielectric member may be arranged at an end portion of the waveguide. The plasma processing system may also include a conductive film arranged on the dielectric member and facing the substrate table, wherein the conductive film may have a thickness smaller than or approximately equal to a skin thickness of the conductive film.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 30, 2000
    Date of Patent: September 23, 2003
    Assignees: Tokyo Electron Limited
    Inventors: Nobuo Ishii, Yasuyoshi Yasaka
  • Patent number: 6429399
    Abstract: A discharge tube for a local etching apparatus has a portion positioned within a waveguide which is for the generation of plasma, the said portion being tapered so as to be divergent toward an orifice side of the discharge tube. Even in the event a maximum field strength position of a standing wave in the waveguide should be deviated due to a change in microwave transmission characteristic of the material of the discharge tube or a change in the position of a plunger under the influence of heat, the maximum field strength position lies somewhere in the vicinity of a wall surface of the tapered portion, so that a supplied gas is converted to plasma stably in a short time. When the discharge tube is to be cooled, the cooling can be done effectively with a cooling gas which is cooled by adiabatic expansion while passing through the tapered portion.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 23, 2001
    Date of Patent: August 6, 2002
    Assignee: SPEEDFAM Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Michihiko Yanagisawa, Tadayoshi Okuya
  • Patent number: 6422172
    Abstract: A plasma processing apparatus has plasma generating means including a means for generating capacitive coupled discharge and a means for radiating electromagnetic waves, so that the energy state of electrons is independently controlled by a combination of a plasma due to capacitive coupled discharge and a plasma due to radiation of electromagnetic waves of a high-frequency, to thereby control the occurrence of radical species, and thereby establishing a compatibility, for example, between high selective etching and high accuracy and high speed in etching or between film quality and film formation rate. Since the density distribution of the plasma can be controlled without any change in hardware configuration by adjusting distributions of the power for capacitive coupled discharge and the power for radiation of electromagnetic waves, the entire surface of a large-sized substrate can be etched at a high accuracy into a fine pattern.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 18, 1998
    Date of Patent: July 23, 2002
    Assignee: Hitachi, Ltd.
    Inventors: Jyunichi Tanaka, Toru Otsubo, Toshio Masuda, Ichiro Sasaki, Tetsunori Kaji, Katsuya Watanabe
  • Patent number: 6375860
    Abstract: The occurrence of internally-formed contaminants or negatively-charged particulates within a plasma is minimized by preventing such from becoming trapped in the plasma. The plasma is formed in a plasma chamber having control electrodes and reference electrodes. The control electrodes are biased with a negative potential. The plasma assumes a potential more positive than the control electrodes. The reference electrodes are then biased to be more positive than the plasma. Hence, negative ions or negatively-charged particulates in the plasma are attracted to the more positive reference electrodes, and thus escape the plasma without being trapped therein, and are not available to serve as nucleation or agglomeration points for contaminants. A pair of Helmholtz coils produce a magnetic field having magnetic field lines that run longitudinally between the control electrodes.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 10, 1995
    Date of Patent: April 23, 2002
    Assignee: General Atomics
    Inventors: Tihiro Ohkawa, Stanley I. Tsunoda
  • Patent number: 6358361
    Abstract: The reactor 1 has an upper end portion attached with a ring member 10 supporting an annular seal plate 4. The ring member 10 has an upper surface attached with a cylindrical block member 25 screwed to the ring member 10. The block member 25 has a portion opposing the annular seal plate 4, the portion being formed with an annular waveguide antenna portion 12. The annular waveguide antenna portion 12 has a bottom portion fitted by an annular plate member 16 formed with a plurality of slits 15, 15 . . . at a predetermined circumferential interval. A heating block 26 made of aluminum shaped into a cylindrical form is embedded detachably within the block member 25. The heating block 26 has a bottom surface detachably attached with an electrode 18 by screws. The electrode 18 is earthed.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 18, 2000
    Date of Patent: March 19, 2002
    Assignee: Sumitomo Metal Industries Limited
    Inventor: Naoki Matsumoto
  • Patent number: 6355902
    Abstract: Microwave is introduced into a plasma chamber of a plasma processing apparatus and magnetic field is applied thereto to allow plasma generation gas to be placed in plasma state by the electron cyclotron resonance. This plasma is introduced into a film forming chamber of the plasma processing apparatus to allow film forming gas including compound gas of carbon and fluorine or compound gas of carbon, fluorine and hydrogen, and hydro carbon gas to be placed in plasma state. In addition, an insulating film consisting of fluorine added carbon film is formed by the film forming gas placed in plasma state.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 2, 2001
    Date of Patent: March 12, 2002
    Assignee: Tokyo Electron Limited
    Inventors: Takashi Akahori, Masaki Tozawa, Yoko Naito, Risa Nakase, Osamu Yokoyama, Shuichi Ishizuka, Shunichi Endo, Masahide Saito, Takeshi Aoki, Tadashi Hirata
  • Patent number: 6332947
    Abstract: A plasma processing apparatus is provided with at least one waveguide portion for introducing microwaves, an electron heating space chamber formed on a downstream side with respect to a dielectric body in the waveguide portion, and a plasma generating space chamber coupled with the electron heating space chamber. A first static magnetic field generating device surrounds the electron heating space chamber using permanent magnets, producing a strong magnetic field exceeding an electron cyclotron resonance magnetic field strength along a propagation direction of the microwave in the electron heating space chamber and in a microwave leading-out portion of the dielectric body, and forming a cusped magnetic field.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 5, 1999
    Date of Patent: December 25, 2001
    Assignee: Hitachi, Ltd.
    Inventors: Satoshi Ichimura, Tadashi Sato, Isao Hashimoto
  • Patent number: 6290807
    Abstract: The invention provides microwave plasma process apparatus and method in which an antenna having a tubular member curved in a circular shape and including at least one slit is disposed on a sealing member for sealing a chamber, so that microwaves can be emitted through the slit to the sealing member.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 6, 1999
    Date of Patent: September 18, 2001
    Assignee: Tokyo Electron Limited
    Inventors: Naoki Matsumoto, Toshio Nakanishi
  • Publication number: 20010019040
    Abstract: A discharge tube for a local etching apparatus has a portion positioned within a waveguide which is for the generation of plasma, the said portion being tapered so as to be divergent toward an orifice side of the discharge tube. Even in the event a maximum field strength position of a standing wave in the waveguide should be deviated due to a change in microwave transmission characteristic of the material of the discharge tube or a change in the position of a plunger under the influence of heat, the maximum field strength position lies somewhere in the vicinity of a wall surface of the tapered portion, so that a supplied gas is converted to plasma stably in a short time. When the discharge tube is to be cooled, the cooling can be done effectively with a cooling gas which is cooled by adiabatic expansion while passing through the tapered portion.
    Type: Application
    Filed: February 23, 2001
    Publication date: September 6, 2001
    Inventors: Michihiko Yanagisawa, Tadayoshi Okuya
  • Patent number: 6270618
    Abstract: A plasma processing apparatus is provided which does not require replacement of a band eliminator according to a frequency used, which is capable of performing chamber cleaning without replacing a resonance circuit, and which is capable of performing plasma cleaning of the inside of the chamber without using a bellows. The plasma processing apparatus includes a resonance circuit (band eliminator) for causing series resonance with a microwave circuit formed of at least a susceptor electrode and a processing chamber in order to trap plasma between a plasma excitation electrode and the susceptor electrode when the surface of a workpiece placed on the susceptor electrode is processed by plasma generated between the plasma excitation electrode and the susceptor electrode, which are provided inside the processing chamber; and for causing parallel resonance with the microwave circuit in order to diffuse plasma inside the processing chamber when performing plasma cleaning.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 4, 1998
    Date of Patent: August 7, 2001
    Assignee: ALPS Electric Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Akira Nakano, Sung Chul Kim, Koichi Fukuda, Yasuhiko Kasama, Tadahiro Ohmi, Shoichi Ono
  • Patent number: 6228210
    Abstract: A surface wave coupled plasma etching apparatus according to the present invention can produce a plasma within a confined area above an etching object by a microwave confinement plate, so as to prevent an upper portion of the apparatus from being sputtered by the plasma. The microwave confinement plate is interposed between a pair of glass plates, so that the microwave confinement plate is not exposed to and sputtered by the plasma during an etching process. The lower glass plate which protects the microwave confinement plate from the plasma is formed so as not to change a temperature of itself rapidly when the etching stops, and thereby an undesirable polymer adhesion to the lower glass plate is avoided.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 20, 1999
    Date of Patent: May 8, 2001
    Assignee: Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd.
    Inventor: Cheol-kyu Lee
  • Patent number: 6198067
    Abstract: Many boards 7 to be processed are disposed within a metal chamber 1 in an isolated state, and many ground electrode plates 9 are disposed near by both surfaces of the boards 7 so as to be at the same potential as the chamber 1. While a microwave generated by a magnetron 3 from an upper portion of the chamber 1 is applied in the chamber 1, both surfaces of the boards 7 are processed at a time with plasma by using glow discharges produced between the boards 7 and plates 9 due to a difference in high-frequency potential between the boards 7 and plates 9 under presence of reaction gas.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 31, 1999
    Date of Patent: March 6, 2001
    Assignee: Nippon Mektron, Ltd.
    Inventors: Hiroyuki Ikeda, Shoji Shiga, Ryoichi Mori
  • Patent number: 6189481
    Abstract: A microwave plasma processing apparatus for producing plasma from processing gas by a microwave and processing a wafer or similar semiconductor by the plasma. The apparatus includes a mechanism which allows the areas of radiation ports formed in an upper electrode to be changed independently of each other. This allows a plasma distribution in a plasma processing chamber to be controlled in any desired manner.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 13, 1994
    Date of Patent: February 20, 2001
    Assignee: NEC Corporation
    Inventor: Takeshi Akimoto
  • Patent number: 6172321
    Abstract: A plasma processing apparatus and method of processing a specimen by a plasma. The method and apparatus includes independently controlling a density distribution of the plasma.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 4, 1999
    Date of Patent: January 9, 2001
    Assignee: Hitachi, Ltd.
    Inventors: Ken Yoshioka, Saburou Kanai, Tetsunori Kaji, Ryoji Nishio, Manabu Edamura