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Study of pad surface treatment to control polishing performance

Jaehong Park1,a, Masaharu Kinoshita1, Shinichi Matsumura1, Kihyun Park2, Haedo Jung2 Nitta-Hass Inc. 3-17-1, Kannabidai, Kyotanabe-Shi, Kyoto, 610-0333, Japan Pusan National University 30, Changjeon-dong, Geumjeong-gu, Pusan, 609-735, Korea
a 2 1

jpark@nittahaas.co.jp

Abstract
There have been many papers and research results which concluded that surface roughness has a relationship with polishing performance in CMP or conventional polishing process. Especially, removal rate is a most influenced performance. The polishing pad plays a key role in chemical mechanical polishing. The abrasive particles are held on the polishing pad. The work surface is polished when the abrasive particles is pressed against the surface by the asperity of the pad. A significant feature of the pad is its asperities on the surface of the pad. Asperities are composed with some different amplitude and frequency components. Small amplitude and high frequency components will be roughness, and large amplitude and low frequency will be waviness of pad. Conventionally polishing pad is a polymer sheet that has asperities and visco-elasticity, so pressure under the wafer has uneven geographical distribution caused by asperities on pad surface. For surface treatment to control surface physical properties of pad, various methods can be chosen. In this research, we choose mechanical treatment method to remove and control asperities. Buffing process is one method of mechanical surface treatment. In buffing process, removed amount of surface and roughness affect on physical properties such as visco-elasticity, compressibility, recover property and deformation amount. Purpose of buffing process is to improve wafer uniformity by controlling pad waviness and roughness. In this research, pads for the bare wafer polishing are studied. Pad properties of different surface asperities caused by buffing process were investigated. The target is to stabilize the CMP process through an analysis of the polishing performance and friction signal in different process conditions and consumables. At result, we could find that surface treatment is useful method to control polishing performance. We could improve polishing performance by optimizing buffing process. When we adjust buffing process to bare polishing pad, we could control polishing performance such as removal rate and process stability by controlling deformation amount and roughness of pad surface. When we reduce the waviness of pad, wafer uniformity can be improved and removal rate can be maintained. And also, pad break-in time can be reduced effectively. 1. RESEARCH 1.1 OBJECTIVES OF RESEARCH The polishing process of the silicon wafer is fundamental to the CMP (Chemical Mechanical Polishing) technology, it provides the direction of research for the polishing process, the fundamental research of ultra precision technology. Although the polishing process of bare wafers has been stabilized, TTV (Total Thickness Variation) and flatness improvement considering the Nano-topography effect has to be studied. Analysis of silicon wafer polishing is needed to satisfy this requirement after polishing the silicon substrate. Also, the buffing process enables control of the properties of the polishing pad. Therefore, this research will verify the effect of the buffing process on pad surfaces through analyses of the removal rate, friction force and temperature. 1.2 RESEARCH AREA In this research, polishing characteristics of the silicon wafer are studied to satisfy the needs according to the high integration of the device and high uniformity achievement of the polishing process. Especially, pads

for the bare wafer polishing are studied. (Fig. 1.1) Pad properties according to the pad surface condition with buffing processes are investigated. The target is to stabilize the polishing processes through an analysis of the polishing characteristics and friction signal according to the process condition and consumable. Categories of the research are as follow. -Pad characterization according to the buffing condition of pad surface. -Analysis of the relationship between buffing condition and removal rate. -Analysis of the friction characteristics according to the buffing condition. -Analysis of the temperature of pad surface according to the buffing condition. -Verification of a correlation between the buffing process and polishing characteristics. 2. Buffing process and polishing performance The polishing pad plays a key role in chemical mechanical polishing. The abrasive particles have been incorporated into the polishing pad. The surface of the material is polished when the abrasive particle is pressed against the surface by the asperity of the pad. The particle is under the force of the asperity, pushing against the surface, dragged along by the asperity at the relative velocity of the pad with respect to the wafer. A significant feature of the pad is its asperities on the top of the pad. In an ideal process, the material of the wafer is removed uniformly. However, in actual condition, material removal rate of the wafer is not uniform due to the unequal pressure over the wafer surface. Parameters of CMP are the polishing pressure, relative velocity, pad properties, slurry properties and kinematics. Especially, it is well known that polishing characteristics depend on the surface roughness of the pad and pad wear. Therefore, it is important to research the relationship between the surface properties of the pad and CMP characteristics. 2.1 DEFINITION OF BUFFING PROCESS. It is necessary to understand the buffing process which enables change of conditions of the pad surface and control of properties of the pad. It is possible to verify the correlation between the buffing process and polishing characteristics through basic understanding of the buffing process. Buffing is a specific type of mechanical polishing using a high speed disc (buffer) made from layers of cloth, leather or plastics impregnated with an abrasive. The workpiece is pressed against the disc for buffing. Buffing process of a polishing pad means a fabrication of the pad surface using a buffer made from sandpaper on the basis of a general mechanism of the buffing process. As shown in Fig 2.1, a polishing pad has a random and irregular on the surface. A pad enables slurry supply to a polishing point and follows the shape of wafer. But this irregular structure of the pad causes a non-uniform distribution of polishing pressure. Also, it is difficult to control of the pad surface and ultimately causes a bad polishing characteristic. Therefore, it is necessary to control the random and irregular layer of a polishing pad. Above all, we classified the parameters involved in the buffing process according to the degree of importance. Fig 2.1 shows the parameters of the buffing process. The dominant parameters are the surface roughness, the elastic modulus and the visco-elastic deformation. These dominant parameters are looked at for their possible effects on break-in time, removal rate, WTWNU, friction force, TTV and pad surface temperature. Consequently, our research will verify the effect of the buffing process on polishing characteristics according to the parameters of the buffing process. 2.2 EXPERIMENTAL CONDITIONS MH pads which have a different surface condition using the buffing process was made to understand an effect of the buffing process on a polishing characteristic. MH buffed pad is classified Non-buffed, rough, middle and fine pads as shown in Fig 2.2. Non-buffed pad is a conventional pad; it plays a role of a reference pad in this experiment. A surface roughness of buffed MH pad was measured using a contact surface profiler (Mitutoyo stylus) and a non-contact surface profiler (Nanoview). A visco-elastic deformation was measured using a visco-elastic measurement system (G&P tech). Table 2.1 shows an experimental condition. A polisher is POLI500 (G&P tech). Slurry is NP6217a (amineless type slurry) and NP6220 (amine type slurry). A slurry flow rate is 120ml/minute. A pressure is 300g/cm2 and a velocity is 100(head)/100(plate) rpm. A polishing time is 15minute. A wafer is 4″silicon wafer.

In this experiment, removal rate, friction force and pad temperature were analyzed to understand an effect of the buffing process. A target of this experiment is ultimately a verification of the correlation between the buffing process and a polishing characteristic. 2.3 PAD PROPERTIES SURFACE IMAGE OF BUFFED MH PAD Fig 2.3 shows a SEM image of the buffed MH pad. The SEM images show a difference of buffed pad surface. No-buffed pad has a plain and smooth surface. The rough buffed pad has a rough surface and the fine buffed pad has less rough surface. Fig 2.3 shows a SEM image of pad after 150minute polishing. It shows an unchanged surface of the buffed MH pad after polishing. So, it is insignificant to argue about an existence of MH pad roughness. SURFACE ROUGHNESS OF BUFFED MH PAD A surface roughness of buffing pad is measured by using Mitutoyo stylus, a contact surface profiler, and the result is shown in Fig.2.4. A surface roughness of pad is measured to 20 times and they are presented as an average value. The rough buffed pad has the highest roughness and the fine buffed pad has the lowest roughness. However, this roughness data is not reliable due to a contact surface profiler. MH pads have a big size and numerous porosities on the surface. It cause many error data in a measuring the surface roughness. Although the rough buffed pad has a high roughness, it can’t be discussed due to a lack of reliability. Thus, we measured a roughness of pad using non-contact surface profiler. As shown in Fig 2.5, only a wall area of a pad is measured. Although a surface roughness is not proportional to a buffing condition, the rough buffed pad and the middle buffed pad have a high roughness. There is not a significant difference between no-buffed pad and the fine buffed pad. These results are found in Fig 2.6; 3D image of a pad surface. VISCOELASTICS BEHAVIOR OF BUFFED MH PAD Fig 2.7 shows results of a viscoelastic deformation of MH pads according to the buffing condition. Nobuffed pad shows the largest deformation and the middle buffed pad has the smallest deformation. A result of the visco-elastic deformation is not proportional to the buffing condition because it is difficult to control pad surface using sandpaper. Fig 2.8 shows the elastic modulus of buffed MH pad. A low elastic modulus means a high deformation. Thus, the elastic modulus of the middle buffed pad is the largest and that of no-buffed pad is the lowest. Therefore, we expect the middle buffed pad has the best performance from these results of the visco-elastic deformation and the elastic modulus. PROFILE OF BUFFED MH PAD Fig 2.9 shows different profiles in different buffing process. Middle buffed pad has the least waviness on surface area. This result came from buffing process condition which likes clearance of buffing M/C shaft or distribution of tools height. In middle buffing process, we could achieve least waviness on total surface of pad. 2.4 POLISHING RESULTS REMOVAL RATE WITH BUFFED CONDITION Fig 2.10 shows a polishing result using the buffed MH pad. As shown in Fig 2.11, it could be find that removal rate is low at run1 time. It means that polishing pad made by the buffing process is not stable stage at an initial time. But, the buffed pads had a good repeatability and stable polishing performance. Especially, middle buffed pad had a best polishing performance. -RR= Amineless type slurry As shown in Fig 2.10(a), the removal rate of the rough buffed pad and the middle buffed pad is higher than those of no-buffed and the fine buffed pads. It could be find a stability of removal rate after run3 time. Also as shown in Fig 2.11(a), the rough buffed pad and the middle buffed pad have a WTWNU; 1.9% and 1.7%. No-buffed pad has a WTWNU; 6.3%. So, buffed pads (the the rough buffed pad and the middle buffed pad) have better WTWNU than no-buffed pad. Therefore, the buffing process can improve the removal rate and WTWNU.

-RR = Amine type slurry Like a result of amineless type slurry, the middle buffed pad has the highest removal rate and no-buffed pad has the lowest removal rate as shown in Fig 2.10(b). Also, all pads show stable polishing characteristics after run2 time. As shown in Fig 2.11(b), the middle buffed pad has the best WTWNU (2.8%) among the all pads. Otherwise, WTWNU of no-buffed pad is the worst (14.1%). But these results are polishing results without conditioning process. So, conditioning process was done on the pad surface to verify the effect of buffing process on the polishing characteristic. Experimental condition are; pressure of conditioning 60 g/cm2, velocity 60(head)/60(plate) and conditioning time 5minute. As shown in Fig 2.12, buffed pads such as the rough, middle and fine pads doesn’t have a significant change of removal rate. But removal rate of no-buffed pad drastically increases after conditioning process. This result is evidence about the effect of buffing process on the pad performance. It comes to a conclusion that the middle buffed pad has the best performance and no-buffed pad has the worst performance from these results. Therefore, the buffing process can improve a performance of polishing pad. FRICTION FORCE AND TEMPERATURE WITH BUFFED CONDITION -Friction force= Amineless and Amine type slurry Fig 2.13 shows a result of friction force. The rough and middle buffed pads which have a high removal rate have a high value of friction force. This tendency is because friction force has a correlation with removal rate in polishing. But result of friction force doesn’t show a distinct difference as a result of removal rate. As shown in Fig 2.14, but there is an interesting signal at initial polishing time. An interesting signal was found in all experiments. This phenomenon was named “Break-In delay phenomenon.” Although a time of Break-In delay is not same in all pads, no-buffed pad has the longest “Break-In delay” time. This phenomenon; “Break-In delay” was found in experiments using both amineless type slurry and amine type slurry. -Temperature = Amineless and Amine type slurry A temperature on pad surface was measured using an infrared light temperature sensor and Fig 2.15 shows a result of it. It is difficult to speak which pad has good temperature behavior from Fig 2.16. But the temperature of no-buffed pad increases sharply as a polishing time. Therefore, temperature characteristic of no-buffed pad is poor than those of other pads such as rough, middle and fine pads. Like results about friction force, Break-In delay phenomenon was found in results about temperature. Nobuffed pad has the longest time of Break-In delay in temperature results. Also buffed pads such as rough, middle and fine buffed pad has shorter time than that of no-buffed pad. -Break-In phenomenon In analysis of friction and temperature, we could find that the least waviness condition on pad surface offered shorter break-in delay time. (Fig 2.17) 3. CONCLUSION This research was done to verify the effect of the buffing process on the polishing characteristics. Summaries of this research are as follow. -The buffing process has an effect on the pad surface and the properties of the pad, such as the surface roughness, the visco-elastics behavior and the elastic modulus. -The surface roughness and the visco-elastic deformation of MH pad are not proportional with the buffing condition. -The removal rate of the buffed MH pads shows a difference according to the buffing condition. The rough buffed pads have higher removal rate than those of the fine buffed pad. -The middle buffed pad has the best WTWNU among the buffed pads. -The friction force and the temperature of the middle buffed pad are stable during the polishing time. But the gap of signal is a little bit. -There is an abnormal phenomenon; the Break-In delay. The pad has a strong correlation with the Break-In delay. Also, the buffing condition has an effect on the Break-In delay phenomenon. The middle buffed pad show the shortest Break-In delay time. -In conclusions, the pad can improve the polishing characteristics.

Fig. 1.1 CMP tribo-system
Buffing Factors
Surface roughness Modulus (NU) Hydrophilicity Hardness (NU) Thickness Flatness Contact area Abrasion resistance Compressibility

Buffing Effect
Pad stabilization time Removal rate Uniformity TTV Roughness Friction force Temperature Defects

(a) Buffing factors and buffing effects
Dominant Factors
Surface roughness Modulus (NU) Contact area Compressibility

Measurement
Possible Possible Difficult Possible

Dominant Effect
Break-in (pad stabilization) time Removal rate and uniformity TTV Friction force and Temperature

(b) Dominant buffing factors

(c) Dominant buffing effects

Fig.2.1 related with buffing process and effect of buffing process on polishing results; (a) buffing factors and buffing effect, (b) dominant buffing factors and (c) dominant buffing effects.

Table 2.1 Experimental condition(Polishing test)

Buffing

Reference No buffing Large deformation

Rough

Middle

Fine Fine buffing Small deformation Sand paper

Buffing condition Deformation Buffing method

Fig.2.2 Schematics of MH pad with buffing process

Fig. 2.3 SEM image of buffed pad; before polishing and after polishing
Contact surface profiler
32.0

Noncontact surface profiler
N a _i

Ra _ avg =
31.5 R a (u m

∑R
i =1

3

N

(N = 20)
R a (u m

2. 5 2

31.0

1. 5 1 0. 5

30.5

No Buffed

Rough

Middle

Fine

30.0

0

No Buffed

Rough

Middle

Fine

(a) Roughness of buffed pad; contact surface profiler system (b) Roughness of buffed pad; non-contact surface profiler system Fig. 2.4Measured surface roughness with buffing condition ; (a) contact surface profiler system and (b) non-contact surface profiler system
M e a s u r in g p o in t

Fig. 2.5 Measuring point of surface roughness
No buffed

Rough #100

(a) No buffed pad
#240 Middle

(b) Rough buffed pad
#600 #Fine 600

(c) Middle buffed pad

(d) Fine buffed pad

Fig. 2.6 3D image of measured buffed pad surface using the noncontact surface profiler; (a) No buffed pad, (b) Rough buffed pad, (c) Middle buffed pad and (d) Fine buffed pad
2.83

Deformation (mm)

2.82
2.84

Elastic Modulus (KPa)

Fine #600 Middle #240 Rough #100 Standard No Buffed
2.83 #600 #240 #100 Standard

35 30 25 20 15 10 5 0 9 13 15 28

2.81

Deformation (mm)

2.82

2.81

2.80

2.80

2.79 0 200 400 600 800 1000

Time (sec)

2.79 90 100 110 120 130 140 150 160

No buffed

Rough #100

Middle #240

Fine #600

Time (sec)

Pad type

Fig. 2.7 Viscoelastic deformation of buffed MH pad
1560 1540
1560 1540

Fig. 2.8 Elastics modulus of buffed MH pad
Thickness(um)
1520 1500 1480 1460 1440 1420 1400 1380 0 50 100 150 200

Thickness(um)

1520 1500 1480 1460 1440 1420 1400 1380 0 50 100 150 200 250 300 350

No buffed

Rough
250 300 350

Location(mm)

Location(mm)
1560

1560

Thickness(um)

Thickness(um)

1540 1520 1500 1480 1460 1440 1420 1400 1380
0 50 100 150 200 250 300 350

1540 1520 1500 1480 1460 1440 1420 1400 1380
0 50 100 150 200 250 300 350

−Middle Medium
Location(mm)

Fine Location(mm)

Fig.2.9 Profile of buffed pad in different condition
0.40
Rem oval Rat e( um / m in)

0.8 Removal Rate(um/min) 0.7 0.6 0.5 0.4 0.3 0.2
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8

0.37 0.34 0.31 0.28 0.25 0.22 Run tim e No No buff buffRough #100 #240 Middle #600 Fine

1

2

3 Run time

4

5

No buff buff Rough No #100

Middle #240

#600 Fine

(a) Aminless type slurry(NP6217a)

(b) Amin type slurry(NP6220)

Fig. 2.10 Removal rate of buffed pads with polishing run time; (a) RR of buffed MH pad(NP6217a slurry) and (b) RR of buffed MH pad(NP6220 slurry)

0.40 0.37 WTWNU(%) 0.34 0.31 0.28 1.9 0.25 0.22 No buff #100 Rough #240 Middle 1.7 6.3

8

0.8 14.1

16

6

0.6

12

4 3.2 2

0.4

7.7

8 4.5 4 2.8

0.2

0

0 No buff #100 Rough #240 Middle Pad type RR_avg WTWNU(%)

0

Fine #600

Fine #600

Pad type RR_avg WTWNU(%)

(a) Amineless type slurry(NP6217a)

(b) Amine type slurry(NP6220)

Fig. 2.11 WTWNU(wafer to wafer nonuniformity) with buffed pads

0.3800 0.3600 RR(um/min)
RR(um/min)

0.8000 0.7000 0.6000 0.5000 0.4000 0.3000 0.2000 0.1000 0.0000

0.3400 0.3200 0.3000 0.2800 No buff #100 Rough Con(X ) #240 Middle

Fine #600

No buff

#100 Rough
Con(X)

#240 Middle
Con(O)

Fine #600

Con(O)

(a) Amineless type slurry(NP6217a) (b) Amine type slurry(NP6220) Fig. 2.12 Removal rate of buffed MH pads; with conditioning and without conditioning process; (a) NP6217a and (b) NP6220 slurry

7.5

8 Friction force (kgf) 7 6 5 4 3

Friction force (kgf)

6.5

5.5

4.5

3.5 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 Run time #100 No buffNo buffRough #240 Middle #600 Fine

1

2

3 Run time

4

5

No #100 No buffbuff Rough

#240 Middle

#600 Fine

(a) Amineless type slurry(NP6217a) (b) Amine type slurry(NP6220) Fig. 213 Friction force with buffed MH pad
7 No buffed 6

7 #100 6

Friction force(kgf)

Friction force(kgf)

5 4 3 2 1 0 -1 0 50 100 150 200 250

5 4 3 2 1 0 0 50 100 150 200 250

No buffed pad
Polishing time(sec)

Rough #100 pad #100 pad
Polishing time(sec)

(a) Signal of no buffed pad
7 #240 6
5 6

(b) Signal of Rough buffed pad
#600

Friction force(kgf)

Friction force(kgf)

5 4 3 2 1 0 -1 0 50 100 150 200 250

4 3 2 1 0 -1 0 50 100 150 200 250

Middle #240 pad
Polishing time(sec)

Fine #600 pad #600 pad
Polishing time(sec)

(c) Signal of Middle buffed pad

(d) Signal of Fine buffed pad

Fig. 2.14 Signal of friction force with buffed MH pad; Amineless type slurry(NP6217a)

32 31 Temperature( ℃) 30 29 28 27 26 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 Run time #100 No buffNo buffRough #240 Middle #600 Fine

Fig. 2.15 Temperature of polishing pad surface with buffing condition

32 No buffed

30 #100

Temperature(celsius)

Temperature(celsius)

30

28

28

26

26

24

No buffed pad
0 50 100 150 200 250

24

Rough #100 pad
22 0 50 100 150 200 250

22

Polishing time(sec)

Polishing time(sec)

(a) Signal of no buffed pad
30 #240

(b) Signal of Rough buffed pad
30 #600

Temperature(celsius)

28

Temperature(celsius)

28

26

26

24

24

Middle d #240 pad pa
22 0 50 100 150 200 250 22 0 50 100

Fine d #600 pad pa
150 200 250

Polishing time(sec)

Polishing time(sec)

(c) Signal of Middle buffed pad

(d) Signal of Fine buffed pad

Fig. 2.16 Signal of temperature with buffed MH pad

Amineless type slurry
7 No buffed pad 6 6 7 #240

Friction force(kgf)

4 3 2 1 0 -1 0 50 100 150 200 250

Friction force(kgf)

5

5 4 3 2 1 0 -1 0 50 100 150 200 250

Polishing time(sec)

Polishing time(sec)

No buffed pad

Middle buffed pad #240 pad

Amine type slurry
7 No buffed 6 6 7 #240

Friction force(kgf)

4 3 2 1 0 -1 0 50 100 150 200 250

Friction force(kgf)

5

5 4 3 2 1 0 -1 0 50 100 150 200 250

Polishing time(sec)

Polishing time(sec)

No buffed pad

Middle#240 pad buffed pad

Fig. 2.17Signal of friction force with buffed MH pad; Break-In delay