Trap spectroscopy in Si3N4 ultrathin films using exoelectron emission method

M. Naich*, G. Rosenman, M. Molotskii, Ya Roizin

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review


We developed an original thermally stimulated exoelectron emission spectroscopy method (TSEE) of measurements of the activation energy Φ of electron (hole) traps in ultrathin Si3N4 films. The temperature spectra of TSEE of 50A silicon nitride films demonstrate several peaks: three low temperature peaks (T1 =373K, T2=423K, T3=498K) and a high temperature maximum at T4 ∼750K. The obtained values of the energy activation are Φ1=0.82 eV, Φ2=0.93 eV, Φ3=1.09 eV, and Φ4=1.73 eV. TSEE results are shown to be consistent with φ estimates obtained from MicroFLASH® two bit per cell memory transistor measurements. Electrons stored at traps with Φ4=1.73 eV explain excellent microFlash retention properties. We believe that deep traps in Silicon Nitride are Hydrogen containing centers, while Hydrogen hopping is the route cause of observed material degradation in course of TSEE measurements.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)215-219
Number of pages5
JournalMaterials Research Society Symposium - Proceedings
StatePublished - 2002
EventNovel Materials and Processes for Advanced CMOS - Boston, MA, United States
Duration: 2 Dec 20024 Dec 2002


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