skip to main content

Title: Using metal precursors to passivate oxides for area selective deposition

Although it has long been known that metal-containing compounds can serve as catalysts for chemical vapor deposition (CVD) of films from other precursors, we show that metal-containing compounds can also inhibit CVD nucleation or growth. For two precursors A and B with growth onset temperatures TgA < TgB when used independently, it is possible that B can inhibit growth from A when the two precursors are coflowed onto a substrate at a temperature (T) where TgA < T < TgB. Here, we consider three precursors: AlH3⋅NMe3 (Tg = 130 °C, Me = CH3), Hf(BH4)4 (Tg = 170 °C), and AlMe3 (Tg = 300 °C). We find that (i) nucleation of Al from AlH3⋅NMe3 is inhibited by Hf(BH4)4 at 150 °C on two oxide surfaces (Si with native oxide and borosilicate glass), (ii) nucleation and growth of HfB2 is inhibited by AlMe3 at 250 °C on native oxide substrates and on HfB2 nuclei, and (iii) nucleation of Al from AlH3⋅NMe3 is inhibited by AlMe3 at 200 °C on native oxide substrates. Inhibition by Hf(BH4)4 is transient and persists only as long as its coflow is maintained; in contrast, AlMe3 inhibition of HfB2 growth is more permanent and continues after coflow is halted. As a result of nucleation inhibition, AlMe3 coflow enhances selectivity for HfB2 deposition on Au (growth) over Al2O3 (nongrowth) surfaces, and Hf(BH4)4 coflow makes it possible to deposit Al on Al nuclei and not on the surrounding oxide substrate. We propose the following criteria to identify candidate molecules for other precursor–inhibitor combinations: (i) the potential inhibitor should have a higher Tg than the desired film precursor, (ii) the potential inhibitor should be unreactive toward the desired film precursor, and (iii) at the desired growth temperature, the potential inhibitor should adsorb strongly enough to form a saturated monolayer on the intended nongrowth surface at accessible inhibitor pressures.

more » « less
Award ID(s):
Author(s) / Creator(s):
; ; ;
Publisher / Repository:
American Institute of Physics
Date Published:
Journal Name:
Journal of Vacuum Science & Technology A
Medium: X
Sponsoring Org:
National Science Foundation
More Like this
  1. Abstract

    Hematin crystallization is an essential element of heme detoxification of malaria parasites and its inhibition by antimalarial drugs is a common treatment avenue. We demonstrate at biomimetic conditions in vitro irreversible inhibition of hematin crystal growth due to distinct cooperative mechanisms that activate at high crystallization driving forces. The evolution of crystal shape after limited-time exposure to both artemisinin metabolites and quinoline-class antimalarials indicates that crystal growth remains suppressed after the artemisinin metabolites and the drugs are purged from the solution. Treating malaria parasites with the same agents reveals that three- and six-hour inhibitor pulses inhibit parasite growth with efficacy comparable to that of inhibitor exposure during the entire parasite lifetime. Time-resolved in situ atomic force microscopy (AFM), complemented by light scattering, reveals two molecular-level mechanisms of inhibitor action that prevent β-hematin growth recovery. Hematin adducts of artemisinins incite copious nucleation of nonextendable nanocrystals, which incorporate into larger growing crystals, whereas pyronaridine, a quinoline-class drug, promotes step bunches, which evolve to engender abundant dislocations. Both incorporated crystals and dislocations are known to induce lattice strain, which persists and permanently impedes crystal growth. Nucleation, step bunching, and other cooperative behaviors can be amplified or curtailed as means to control crystal sizes, size distributions, aspect ratios, and other properties essential for numerous fields that rely on crystalline materials.

    more » « less
  2. Iron oxide nanomaterials participate in redox processes that give them ideal properties for their use as earth-abundant catalysts. Fabricating nanocatalysts for such applications requires detailed knowledge of the deposition and growth. We report the spontaneous deposition of iron oxide nanoparticles on HOPG in defect areas and on step edges from a metal precursor solution. To study the nucleation and growth of iron oxide nanoparticles, tailored defects were created on the surface of HOPG using various ion sources that serve as the target sites for iron oxide nucleation. After solution deposition and annealing, the iron oxide nanoparticles were found to nucleate and coalesce at 400 °C. AFM revealed that the particles on the sp 3 carbon sites enabled the nanoparticles to aggregate into larger particles. The iron oxide nanoparticles were characterized as having an Fe 3+ oxidation state and two different oxygen species, Fe–O and Fe–OH/Fe–OOH, as determined by XPS. STEM imaging and EDS mapping confirmed that the majority of the nanoparticles grown were converted to hematite after annealing at 400 °C. A mechanism of spontaneous and selective deposition on the HOPG surface and transformation of the iron oxide nanoparticles is proposed. These results suggest a simple method for growing nanoparticles as a model catalyst. 
    more » « less
  3. We report the growth of nanoscale hafnium dioxide (HfO2) and zirconium dioxide (ZrO2) thin films using remote plasma-enhanced atomic layer deposition (PE-ALD), and the fabrication of complementary metal-oxide semiconductor (CMOS) integrated circuits using the HfO2 and ZrO2 thin films as the gate oxide. Tetrakis (dimethylamino) hafnium (Hf[N(CH3)2]4) and tetrakis (dimethylamino) zirconium (IV) (Zr[N(CH3)2]4) were used as the precursors, while O2 gas was used as the reactive gas. The PE-ALD-grown HfO2 and ZrO2 thin films were analyzed using X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS), X-ray diffraction (XRD), and high-resolution transmission electron microscopy (HRTEM). The XPS measurements show that the ZrO2 film has the atomic concentrations of 34% Zr, 2% C, and 64% O while the HfO2 film has the atomic concentrations of 29% Hf, 11% C, and 60% O. The HRTEM and XRD measurements show both HfO2 and ZrO2 films have polycrystalline structures. n-channel and p-channel metal-oxide semiconductor field-effect transistors (nFETs and pFETs), CMOS inverters, and CMOS ring oscillators were fabricated to test the quality of the HfO2 and ZrO2 thin films as the gate oxide. Current-voltage (IV) curves, transfer characteristics, and oscillation waveforms were measured from the fabricated transistors, inverters, and oscillators, respectively. The experimental results measured from the HfO2 and ZrO2 thin films were compared. 
    more » « less
  4. To enable greater control over thermal atomic layer deposition (ALD) of molybdenum disulfide (MoS 2 ), here we report studies of the reactions of molybdenum hexafluoride (MoF 6 ) and hydrogen sulfide (H 2 S) with metal oxide substrates from nucleation to few-layer films. In situ quartz crystal microbalance experiments performed at 150, 200, and 250 °C revealed temperature-dependent nucleation behavior of the MoF 6 precursor, which is attributed to variations in surface hydroxyl concentration with temperature. In situ Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy coupled with ex situ x-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS) indicated the presence of molybdenum oxide and molybdenum oxyfluoride species during nucleation. Density functional theory calculations additionally support the formation of these species as well as predicted metal oxide to fluoride conversion. Residual gas analysis revealed reaction by-products, and the combined experimental and computational results provided insights into proposed nucleation surface reactions. With additional ALD cycles, Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy indicated steady film growth after ∼13 cycles at 200 °C. XPS revealed that higher deposition temperatures resulted in a higher fraction of MoS 2 within the films. Deposition temperature was found to play an important role in film morphology with amorphous films obtained at 200 °C and below, while layered films with vertical platelets were observed at 250 °C. These results provide an improved understanding of MoS 2 nucleation, which can guide surface preparation for the deposition of few-layer films and advance MoS 2 toward integration into device manufacturing. 
    more » « less
  5. null (Ed.)
    Abstract The plant shikimate pathway directs bulk carbon flow toward biosynthesis of aromatic amino acids (AAAs, i.e. tyrosine, phenylalanine, and tryptophan) and numerous aromatic phytochemicals. The microbial shikimate pathway is feedback inhibited by AAAs at the first enzyme, 3-deoxy-d-arabino-heptulosonate 7-phosphate synthase (DHS). However, AAAs generally do not inhibit DHS activities from plant extracts and how plants regulate the shikimate pathway remains elusive. Here, we characterized recombinant Arabidopsis thaliana DHSs (AthDHSs) and found that tyrosine and tryptophan inhibit AthDHS2, but not AthDHS1 or AthDHS3. Mixing AthDHS2 with AthDHS1 or 3 attenuated its inhibition. The AAA and phenylpropanoid pathway intermediates chorismate and caffeate, respectively, strongly inhibited all AthDHSs, while the arogenate intermediate counteracted the AthDHS1 or 3 inhibition by chorismate. AAAs inhibited DHS activity in young seedlings, where AthDHS2 is highly expressed, but not in mature leaves, where AthDHS1 is predominantly expressed. Arabidopsis dhs1 and dhs3 knockout mutants were hypersensitive to tyrosine and tryptophan, respectively, while dhs2 was resistant to tyrosine-mediated growth inhibition. dhs1 and dhs3 also had reduced anthocyanin accumulation under high light stress. These findings reveal the highly complex regulation of the entry reaction of the plant shikimate pathway and lay the foundation for efforts to control the production of AAAs and diverse aromatic natural products in plants. 
    more » « less