Journal of Applied Physics vol:107 issue:10 pages:1-7
We report a new curing procedure of a plasma enhanced chemical vapor deposited SiCOH glasses for interlayer dielectric applications in microelectronic. It is demonstrated that SiOCH glasses with improved mechanical properties and ultralow dielectric constant can be obtained by controlled decomposition of the porogen molecules used to create nanoscale pores, prior to the UV-hardening step. The Young’s modulus (YM) of conventional SiOCH-based glasses with 32% open porosity hardened with porogen is 4.6 GPa, this value is shown to increase up to 5.2 GPa with even 46% open porosity, when the glasses are hardened after porogen removal. This increase in porosity is accompanied by significant reduction in the dielectric constant from 2.3 to 1.8. The increased YM is related to an enhanced molecular-bridging mechanism when film is hardened without porogen that was explained on the base of percolation of rigidity theory and random network concepts.