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Lateral Extensions to Nanowires for Controlling Nickel Silicidation Kinetics: Improving Contact Uniformity of Nanoelectronic Devices

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Mizuta, R 
Fan, Y 
Tahn, A 
Pohl, D 


Although widely applied as contacts to nanoelectronic devices, metal silicides in nanostructures suffer from varying composition and growth rate. To study the underlying kinetics and to control reactions, we introduce local volume extensions (“polders”) to silicon nanowires. This method allows to decouple the silicide growth process from variations in the metal supply and to gain a reduced length growth rate as long as silicon reaction volume is available in the polders. In situ analyses are gained by scanning electron microscopy during the anneal to extract the growth rates. A deterministic limitation of silicide growth by nickel flux, NiSi2 reaction rate and the nickel diffusion is observed. The extracted maximal reaction rate at the NiSi2-Si interface allows to determine an activation energy. Subsequent transmission electron microscopy reveals an epitaxial {111} NiSi2-Si interface in the 011-oriented nanowire. It is also seen that the polders suppress Ni-rich silicide phases and gives rise to the formation of a single-crystalline Ni-Si phase with a Ni:Si ratio close to 1:1. Retarded growth by the application of polders can almost stop the silicidation in nanowires at 2 a defined point even for different Ni fluxes. This can help to reduce gate overlap and channel length variation especially in Schottky-junction-based field effect transistors. Geometric optimization of the polder regions with regard to largest impact is discussed.



nickel, silicon, nanowires, in situ, silicidation

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ACS Applied Nano Materials

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American Chemical Society (ACS)


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EPSRC (1819434)
Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EP/L015978/1)
Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EP/P005152/1)