Scratch formation on patterned oxide wafers during the chemical mechanical planarization process was investigated. Silica and ceria slurries were used for polishing the experiments to observe the effect of abrasives on the scratch formation. Interlevel dielectric patterned wafers were used to study the scratch dimensions, and shallow trench isolation patterned wafers were used to study the effect of polishing parameters, such as pressure and rotational speed (head/platen). Similar shapes of scratches (chatter type) were observed with both types of slurries. The length of the scratch formed might be related to the period of contact between the wafer and the pad. Large particles would play a significant role in increasing the number of scratches. The probability of scratch generation is more at higher pressures due to higher friction force and removal rate. The optimization of the head to platen velocity could decrease the number of scratches.


Originally published in the Journal of the Electrochemical Society, v.157 no.2 (2010), pp.H186-H191. DOI:10.1149/1.3265474


abrasives, cerium compounds, chemical mechanical polishing, friction, optimisation, planarisation, probability, silicon compounds, slurries

Subject Categories

Integrated circuits - Wafer-scale integration, Chemical mechanical planarization


Electronic Devices and Semiconductor Manufacturing | Nanoscience and Nanotechnology


The Electrochemical Society

Publication Date


Rights Information

Copyright 2009

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The Electrochemical Society

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