In-situ cleaning and passivation of oxidized Cu surfaces by alkanethiols and its application to wire bonding
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The treatment of oxidized Cu surfaces using an alkanethiol as a reducing agent has been investigated. Exposure to a dilute solution of 1-decanethiol resulted in the complete removal and/or conversion of CuO and subsequent formation of a passivating thiolate film, a so-called self-assembled monolayer (SAM), on the underlying Cu/Cu2O surface as evidenced by x-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS) analysis. Morphological changes, monitored by scanning electron microscopy (SEM) and atomic force microscopy (AFM), revealed transformation of the rough, porous CuO layer into a comparatively smooth Cu/Cu2O surface. Experiments performed on integrated circuit back-end-of-line (BEOL) die structures, comprising Cu/SiO2 bond pads used as substrates for Cu wire bonding, demonstrate the potential application of a thiol-based in-situ cleaning-passivation procedure in microelectronics.
Key wordsCu/Cu2O in-situ cleaning and passivation alkanethiol wire bonding
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