Griffith’s Queensland Microtechnology Facility (QMF) is home to novel epitaxial reactors that reduce barriers to adoption of Silicon Carbide (SiC) on Silicon (Si) for microtechnology.
The superior properties of SiC have the potential to revolutionise, enhance, and enable the performance of many devices. Physically, it is stronger, tougher and more robust than other materials commonly used in silicon device fabrication. Chemically it is inert, leading to excellent harsh environment and bio compatibility.
The reactor is capable of harnessing SiC at far lower costs and is therefore potentially unlocking the incredible performance benefits from utilising the material. The team use their reactor to deposit extremely high quality layers of SiC onto conventional Si wafers, combining the performance and price point benefits of each.
The team’s production reactor was built by SPTS in Silicon Valley, a global production semiconductor equipment manufacturer, based on Griffith University IP. The unique process regime and system attributes of the tool targets the highest quality thin film deposition of SiC on Si wafers for MEMS, optical or any other product that can exploit the superior properties of SiC.
Key parameters are:
+ Wafer size: 2” up to 12″ diameter
+ Uniformity: less than 1% thickness non-uniformity across the wafer
+ Edge Exclusion: 1 mm edge exclusion for film thicknesses up to 1 μm
+ Standard Process deposition temperature: 1,000ºC
+ Double side deposition ensures wafers remain flat
+ Device fabrication at the QMF is on 150 mm wafers
Operating in a pressure regime between LPCVD and Molecular Beam Epitaxy the reactors enable exploitation of reactions that only occur at high vacuum. The special process gas handling produces high quality films with industry acceptable uniformity on large batches.
+ Ultrathin (>40 nm) membranes used as supports for nano and bio analysis in high resolution imaging systems such as
TEM or Synchrotrons
+ Harsh environments sensors
+ Optical devices
+ Biocompatible components such as wearable technologies and implantables