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Reactive Ion Etching of Tin Oxide in Hydrogen

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000037707D
Original Publication Date: 1989-May-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2005-Jan-29
Document File: 1 page(s) / 12K

Publishing Venue

IBM

Related People

Chapman, DW: AUTHOR [+2]

Abstract

Tin oxide films can be reactive ion etched in hydrogen, (and in hydrogen in a carrier gas), and that other materials of interest and use in semiconductor and electro-optical type devices were not significantly attacked by the hydrogen etching plasma.

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Reactive Ion Etching of Tin Oxide in Hydrogen

Tin oxide films can be reactive ion etched in hydrogen, (and in hydrogen in a carrier gas), and that other materials of interest and use in semiconductor and electro-optical type devices were not significantly attacked by the hydrogen etching plasma.

Tin oxide is used in many electro-optic devices as a transparent electrode, e.g., in liquid crystal display, solar cells, aircraft windshield heaters, flash lamp triggers. It is also used as a thin film resistor, infrared reflector in architectural glass, and as a wear resistant coating on glass and other materials. It is also used for forming heterojunctions with silicon or GALLIUM ARSENIDE. Tin oxide is very durable under harsh ambients. For example, tin oxide is not attacked at room temperature by either concentrated acids such as nitric, sulfuric, hydrochloric, and hydrofluoric acids, or concentrated bases such as ammonium, sodium, and potassium hydroxides. However, this property makes tin oxide a difficult material to etch for purpose of making patterns or test cell structures.

For example, during an etching time, 30 min, in which a one micron thick film of fluorine-doped tin oxide deposited by CVD on a thermally oxidized silicon wafer was patternwise etched through, with the thermal silicon dioxide underlayer acting as an automatic etch stop; other films such as silicon dioxide, aluminum oxide, chromium placed along side the tin oxide with a mask were not measurably...