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Term (Index) Definition
roughness  lack of planarity of solid surface at the atomic level; three-dimensional surface morphology; in high quality Si wafers better than 0.1 nm.
Term (Index) Definition
surface roughness  disruption of the planarity of the semiconductor surface; measured as a difference between highest and deepest surface features; can be as low as about 0.06 nm for high quality Si wafers with epitaxial layers.
oxide breakdown  irriversible change in physical properties of an insulating oxide as a result of very high electric field in the oxide; as a result of "breakdown" oxide no longer displays insulating properties.

Reference: See Semiconductor Note #20 for more information
AFM  Atomic Force Microscopy; method capable of surface visualization with near-atomic resolution; measurement of roughness of solid surfaces based on electrostatic interactions between surface and measuring tip; tip can be set above the surface, on the surface, or can tap the surface oscillating at high frequency (tapping mode).
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