Semiconductor Glossary, Developed Semi OneSource.
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With over 2000 terms defined and explained, Semiconductor Glossary is the most complete reference in the field of semiconductors on the market today.












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Term (Index) Definition
metallic contaminant  atoms of metals deposited on the Si surface during device processing as a reult of process malfunction; common metallic contaminants: Fe, Al, Cu, Ca, Na; originate from process chemicals, ambient, and tools; major reliability problem; should not be allowed on Si surface in concentrations above 109 cm-2; designated cleans are applied to remove metallic contaminants from the surface.
diffusion length  term applies to the electron transport by diffusion; the distance over which concentration of injected free charge carriers injected into semiconductor falls to 1/e of its original value.
aluminum, contaminant, Al  common metallic contaminant in silicon processing; main source: APM cleaning solution; slows down thermal oxidation of silicon if not removed prior to oxidation; affects oxide reliability; detection and measurement on Si surface by TOF-SIMS.
breakdown  catastrophic effect occurring in the presence of high electric field and causing originally high resistance element (e.g. MOS capacitor of reverse biased p-n junction) to allow flow of high current; typically an irreversible effect permanently damaging the element; also occurs in materials in the presence of very high electric field.
copper, Cu  (i) metal of choice for interconnects in advanced ICs; resistivity the lowest among metals - 1.7 µohm-cm; advantages over aluminum: no electromigration and lower resistivity; (ii) defect causing contaminant if allowed to penetrate silicon; very fast diffusant in silicon; results in reduced lifetime of minority carriers.
generation lifetime  average time needed to generate electron-hole pair
GOI  Gate Oxide Integrity; term implies electrical "integrity" of gate oxide; determined through various current/voltage/electric field stress tests of MOS gate stacks.
iron, Fe  common metallic contaminant in semiconductor processing; introduces energy levels in Si bandgap if thermally activated; may originate from several sources including cleaning solutions (SC-1).
numerical aperture, NA  parameter defining geometry of the objective lens used in projection printing in photolithography; determines lens' ability to collect light diffracted from a mask/reticle; attempts are continuously made to keep NA as high as possible (see immersion lithography for instance).
TXRF  Total Reflection X-Ray Fluorescence (spectroscopy); very effective method for detection of metallic contaminants on the wafer surface; detection of the energy of photons emitted from atoms on the surface as a result of X-ray irradiation at the angle assuring total external reflectance.
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