Enhanced etching of InP by cycling with sputter etching and reactive ion etching

Research output: Journal Publications and Reviews (RGC: 21, 22, 62)21_Publication in refereed journalpeer-review

View graph of relations


  • Alexandros T. Demos
  • H. S. Fogler
  • S. W. Pang
  • Michael E. Elta


Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)291-297
Journal / PublicationProceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering
Publication statusPublished - 1991
Externally publishedYes


TitleAdvanced Techniques for Integrated Circuit Processing
CitySanta Clara, CA, USA
Period1 - 5 October 1990


A new etch technique which oscillates between sputter etching and RIE modes of etching was investigated. Extensive studies for InP using BCl3/Ar and Cl2/BCl3/Ar gas systems were performed with standard RIE equipment. The etching sequence was performed with a programmable controller which automates the cycling sequence. The time period and sputter duty cycle or percent sputter time are two important factors that were studied in these experiments. Using this cyclic technique, an etch rate of 300 angstrom/min was obtained which is an order of magnitude higher than our standard RIE etch rate for InP. Standard optical photoresists can be used as masks for this technique although metal masks are more feasible. The resulting wall shape is vertical with smooth morphology. Etch enhancements may be explained by the removal of an indium chloride layer. Surface analysis was performed to verify that chlorine is forming on the surface.