Laser annealing of sputtered silicon for wafer-bonding applications

Richard Hurley, Harold Gamble, M- Jin, Mervyn Armstrong, M. Ghita, Robert McCullough, A.A.D.T. Adikaari, S.J. Henly, S.R.P. Silva

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Sputtered silicon is investigated as a bonding layer for transfer of pre-processed silicon layers to various insulating substrates. Although the material appears suitable for low temperature processing, previous work has shown that gas trapped in the pores of the sputtered material is released at temperatures above 350 degrees C and further increases of temperature lead to destruction of any bonded interface. Pre-annealing at 1000 degrees C before bonding drives out gas and/or seals the surface, but for device applications where processing temperatures must be kept below about 300 degrees C, this technique cannot be used. In the current work, we have investigated the effect of excimer laser-annealing to heat the sputtered silicon surface to high temperature whilst minimising heating of the underlying substrate. Temperature profile simulations are presented and the results of RBS, TEM and AFM used to characterise the annealed layers. The results verify that gases are present in the sub-surface layers and suggest that while sealing of the surface is important for suppression of the out-diffusion of gases, immediate surface gas removal may also play a role. The laser-annealing technique appears to be an effective method of treating sputtered silicon, yielding a low roughness surface suitable for wafer bonding, thermal splitting and layer transfer.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)121-126
Number of pages6
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2007

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Materials Science(all)
  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics
  • Physics and Astronomy (miscellaneous)

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