Defects in SiC substrates and epitaxial layers affecting semiconductor device performance
Cree, Inc., 4600 Silicon Drive, Durham, NC 27703, USA
Corresponding author: Stephan_Mueller@cree.com
Published online: 15 July 2004
The current status of SiC bulk growth is reviewed, while specific attention is given to the effect of defects in SiC substrates and epitaxial layers on device performance and yield. The progress in SiC wafer quality is reflected in the achievement of micropipe densities as low as 0.92 cm−2 for a 3-inch n-type 4H-SiC wafer, which provides the basis for a high yielding fabrication process of large area SiC power devices. Using a Murphy Probe Yield Analysis for the breakdown characteristics of 10 kV PiN diodes we have extracted an “effective” defect density for 4H-SiC material to be as low as 30 cm−2, providing valuable information to further isolate and address the specific material defects critical for device performance. We address the problematic degradation of the forward characteristics (Vf-drift) of bipolar SiC PiN diodes [CITE]. The underlying mechanism due to stacking fault formation in the epitaxial layers and possible effects of device processing are investigated. An improved device design is demonstrated, which effectively stabilizes this Vf-drift. We show the progression in the development of semi-insulating SiC grown by the sublimation technique from extrinsically doped material to high purity semi-insulating (HPSI) 4H-SiC bulk crystals of up to 100 mm diameter without resorting to the intentional introduction of elemental deep level dopants, such as vanadium. Uniform resistivities in 3-inch HPSI wafers greater than 3 × 1011 Ω-cm have been achieved. Secondary ion mass spectrometry, deep level transient spectroscopy and electron paramagnetic resonance data suggest that the semi-insulating behavior in HPSI material originates from deep levels associated with intrinsic point defects. MESFETs produced on HPSI wafers are free of backgating effects and have resulted in the best combination of power density and efficiency reported to date for SiC MESFETs of 5.2 W/mm and 63% power added efficiency (PAE) at 3.5 GHz.
PACS: 81.10.Bk – Growth from vapor / 61.72.-y – Defects and impurities in crystals; microstructure / 85.30.-z – Semiconductor devices
© EDP Sciences, 2004