The application of phasefluid based intelligent fluids® in the field of photoresist stripping was studied. Due to their highly dynamic inner structure, phasefluids penetrate into the polymer network of photoresists and small gaps between resist layer and substrate and lift off the material from the surface. These non-aggressive stripping fluids were investigated regarding their efficiency in various resist stripping applications including initial results on copper metallization. Furthermore intelligent fluids® have been evaluated on an industry standard high volume single wafer cleaner. A baseline process on 300 mm wafers has been developed and characterized in terms of metallic and ionic impurities and defect level. Finally a general proof of concept for removal of positive tone resist from 300 mm silicon wafers is demonstrated.
The usage of phase fluid based stripping agents to remove photoresists from silicon substrates was studied. Photoresists are required for many silicon based technologies such as MEMS patterning, 3D-Integration or frontend and backend of line semiconductor applications . Although the use of resists is very common, their successful integration often depends on the ability to remove the resist after certain processing steps. On the one hand the resist is changing during subsequent process steps that can cause a thermally activated cross-linking which increases the stripping complexity. Resist removal is also challenging after the formation of a hard polymer surface layer during plasma or implant processes which is called skin or crust . On the other hand the choice of stripping chemistry is often limited due to the presence of functional materials such as metals which can be damaged by aggressive stripping chemistries .
The usage of phasefluid based stripping agents to remove photoresists from silicon substrates was studied. Due to their highly dynamic inner structure phasefluids offer a new working principle, they are penetrating layers through smallest openings and lift off the material from the surface. These non-aggressive stripping fluids were investigated regarding their cleaning efficiency as well as contamination behavior to enable usage in semiconductor and MEMS manufacturing. A general proof of concept for the usage of phasefluids in resist stripping processes is shown on silicon coupons and BKM’s are given for different resist types. In addition a baseline process on 12inch wafers has been developed and characterized in terms of metallic and ionic impurities and defect level.