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Open AccessReview

Atomic Layer Deposition of Silicon Nitride Thin Films: A Review of Recent Progress, Challenges, and Outlooks

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Department of Electrical Engineering, The University of Texas at Dallas, Richardson, TX 75080, USA
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Department of Materials Science and Engineering, The University of Texas at Dallas, Richardson, TX 75080, USA
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Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Beatriz Noheda
Materials 2016, 9(12), 1007; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma9121007
Received: 8 November 2016 / Revised: 1 December 2016 / Accepted: 6 December 2016 / Published: 12 December 2016
With the continued miniaturization of devices in the semiconductor industry, atomic layer deposition (ALD) of silicon nitride thin films (SiNx) has attracted great interest due to the inherent benefits of this process compared to other silicon nitride thin film deposition techniques. These benefits include not only high conformality and atomic-scale thickness control, but also low deposition temperatures. Over the past 20 years, recognition of the remarkable features of SiNx ALD, reinforced by experimental and theoretical investigations of the underlying surface reaction mechanism, has contributed to the development and widespread use of ALD SiNx thin films in both laboratory studies and industrial applications. Such recognition has spurred ever-increasing opportunities for the applications of the SiNx ALD technique in various arenas. Nevertheless, this technique still faces a number of challenges, which should be addressed through a collaborative effort between academia and industry. It is expected that the SiNx ALD will be further perceived as an indispensable technique for scaling next-generation ultra-large-scale integration (ULSI) technology. In this review, the authors examine the current research progress, challenges and future prospects of the SiNx ALD technique. View Full-Text
Keywords: review; atomic layer deposition; plasma-enhanced ALD (PEALD); silicon nitride; thermal ALD; surface reactions review; atomic layer deposition; plasma-enhanced ALD (PEALD); silicon nitride; thermal ALD; surface reactions
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MDPI and ACS Style

Meng, X.; Byun, Y.-C.; Kim, H.S.; Lee, J.S.; Lucero, A.T.; Cheng, L.; Kim, J. Atomic Layer Deposition of Silicon Nitride Thin Films: A Review of Recent Progress, Challenges, and Outlooks. Materials 2016, 9, 1007.

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