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Whole-Surface Analysis of Semiconductor Wafers by Accumulating Short-Time Mapping Data of Total-Reflection X-ray Fluorescence Spectrometry

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journal contribution
posted on 26.01.2002, 00:00 by Yoshihiro Mori, Kenichi Uemura, Yoshinori Iizuka
Total-reflection X-ray fluorescence (TXRF) spectrometry with no chemical preconcentration, often called “straight-TXRF”, is now widely used in the semiconductor industry. The small detection area of TXRF enables mapping measurement of contamination of the semiconductor surface, which is very useful in process characterization. However, the small detection area had been believed to limit rapid whole-surface analysis. Contrary to this general understanding, in this study we demonstrated that a new method, called “sweeping-TXRF”, which is essentially short-time multipoint mapping by straight-TXRF, can rapidly provide an average concentration. A considerable problem of this method is the contribution of errors in glancing angle and areal element distribution to the fluorescence. Using statistics, we examined the errors and demonstrated that most of them are canceled and are not significant in actual semiconductor applications. The results of an experiment that measured localized 6 × 1010 atoms cm-2 nickel contamination supported the above conclusion. Applying sweeping-TXRF to existing TXRF instruments is easythe only requirement is a small software modification. We believe that sweeping-TXRF will be utilized for rapid whole-surface analysis in many fields, especially in the semiconductor industry.