Potassium sorbate solutions as copper chemical mechanical planarization (CMP) based slurries
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Copper depassivation and repassivation characteristics in potassium sorbate solutions, subsequent to mechanical abrading are reported. The identification of copper repassivation kinetics obtained subsequent to mechanical damage of copper protective films formed in sorbate based solutions is discussed. The repassivation rate of copper in sorbate based solutions was measured by means of a slurryjet system capable of measuring single particle impingments on microelectrodes. Copper repassivation rates measured by this slurryjet system in sulfate solutions containing 10 g L-1 potassium sorbate were found to be in the range of 0.5-1.5 ms. An increase in the potassium sorbate concentration leads to a decrease in copper repassivation time at potentials ranging from 200 to 600 mVAg/AgCl. The impingement angle between the copper surface and a single abrasive particle has no impact on copper repassivation time nor peak current (Imax) values. XPS studies revealed that copper passivation in potassium based solution was due to the formation of a thin film which is constituted of: Cu2O, Cu(OH)2 and Cu(II)-sorbate, while copper(II)-sorbate is mainly present at the top levels of the passive film. It is therefore recommended that the use of potassium sorbate as a passivating component in conjunction with the addition of strong oxidizing agents in chemical mechanical planarization (CMP) slurry design should be considered.