High-resolution transmission electron microscopy (HRTEM) and ellipsometry techniques have been employed to measure thicknesses of silicon oxide, grown at 800 °C in dry oxygen, in the thickness range of 2–20 nm. While the oxide growth data measured from TEM obey a nearly linear behavior, those obtained from ellipsometry are seen to vary nonlinearly. The interface structure as function of the increasing oxide thickness was studied using HRTEM. At these oxidation temperatures, the earlier reported variations of roughness at the interface on the oxide thickness for oxides grown at 900 °C are not seen. Attempts aimed at correlating the high-resolution transmission electron micrographs with some physical parameters like the refractive index and the dielectric breakdown lead to considerations of the importance of the effect of protrusions of silicon atoms of 1 mm size into SiO2 layers on the interface properties. These findings lead to explanations of some key features concerning the refractive index and density of thin SiO2.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Materials Science(all)
- Condensed Matter Physics
- Mechanics of Materials
- Mechanical Engineering