The structural stability and electrical performance of SiO 2 grown on SiC via direct plasma-assisted oxidation were investigated. To investigate the changes in the electronic structure and electrical characteristics caused by the interfacial reaction between the SiO 2 film (thickness ∼5 nm) and SiC, X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS), X-ray absorption spectroscopy (XAS), density functional theory (DFT) calculations, and electrical measurements were performed. The SiO 2 films grown via direct plasma-assisted oxidation at room temperature for 300s exhibited significantly decreased concentrations of silicon oxycarbides (SiO x C y) in the transition layer compared to that of conventionally grown (i.e., thermally grown) SiO 2 films. Moreover, the plasma-assisted SiO 2 films exhibited enhanced electrical characteristics, such as reduced frequency dispersion, hysteresis, and interface trap density (D it ‰ 1011 cm-2 · eV --1). In particular, stress induced leakage current (SILC) characteristics showed that the generation of defect states can be dramatically suppressed in metal oxide semiconductor (MOS) structures with plasma-assisted oxide layer due to the formation of stable Si-O bonds and the reduced concentrations of SiOx Cy species defect states in the transition layer. That is, energetically stable interfacial states of high quality SiO 2 on SiC can be obtained by the controlling the formation of SiO x C y through the highly reactive direct plasma-assisted oxidation process.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
This work was supported by the Industry-Academy joint-research program between Samsung Electronics and Yonsei University, and the authors acknowledge research support from NSLS is supported by the U.S. Department of Energy, Office of Science, Office of Basic Energy Sciences, under Contract No. DE-AC02-98CH10886.
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