Materials Research Society Symposium - Proceedings

Diffusion and distribution of photoacid generators in thin polymer films

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Distribution and diffusion of two fluorinated ionic photoacid generators (PAGs) in thin polymer films have been investigated by depth profiling of the intrinsic label elements of both the PAGs and a silicon containing carrier polymer with Rutherford Backscattering Spectrometry (RBS) and dynamic Secondary Ion Mass Spectroscopy (SIMS). Distribution and diffusion of the PAGs in a bilayer film stack, which consists of a thin silicon containing polymer film on top of a thick thermally cross-linked Novolak film on a silicon substrate, have been studied as a function of the Novolak cross-linking temperature. Deposition of the PAG containing polymer films on top of the cross-linked Novolak films by spin coating results in an interphase with enriched PAG. Subsequent annealing of the film stack causes expansion of the interphase and diffusion of the PAG into the underlying Novolak film when Novolak is cross-linked at lower temperatures. On the other hand, there is a uniform PAG distribution and no detectable diffusion of the PAG into Novolak when it is cross-linked at high temperatures. The variations in the PAG distribution and diffusion are attributed to the changes in the chemical and physical properties of Novolak during cross-linking.