Characterization of the chemical effects of ceria slurries for chemical mechanical polishing

J. T. Abiade, S. Yeruva, B. Moudgil, D. Kumar, R. K. Singh

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


For highly selective particle-based slurries or fixed abrasive pads, ceria has been identified as the abrasive of choice for the chemical mechanical polishing (CMP) step for shallow trench isolation (STI). The advantageous performance of ceria-based CMP consumables is usually attributed to enhanced chemical reactivity between ceria and oxide materials. In fact, this reaction is a central theme of all ceria polishing models from glass polishing to STI CMP. Previously, experimental evidence in support of the ceria-silica reaction during CMP was virtually non-existent. Recently, we proposed a pH-dependent ceria-silica polishing mechanism based on polishing results, in-situ friction force measurements, and spectroscopic and microscopic investigations. In this report, we have studied the chemical interactions between ceria and silica in the absence of particles using an atomic force microscope (AFM) and a scanning electron microscope (SEM). AFM silicon tapping mode cantilevers were functionalized by depositing a silica coating via chemical vapor deposition (CVD) and thermal oxidation. SEM imaging and compositional analysis was conducted on the cantilevers before and after wear against a ceria thin film, which was grown by pulsed laser deposition. The cantilever wear profile and elemental composition as a function of pH confirms our earlier polishing results and the pH-dependent CMP model for ceria-silica CMP.

Original languageEnglish
Article numberW8.3
Pages (from-to)69-74
Number of pages6
JournalMaterials Research Society Symposium - Proceedings
StatePublished - 2005
Externally publishedYes
Event2005 Materials Research Society Spring Meeting - San Francisco, CA, United States
Duration: 28 Mar 200531 Mar 2005


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