Applied Physics Letters

Exploitation of a self-limiting process for reproducible formation of ultrathin Ni1-x Ptx silicide films

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This letter reports on a process scheme to obtain highly reproducible Ni1-x Ptx silicide films of 3-6 nm thickness formed on a Si(100) substrate. Such ultrathin silicide films are readily attained by sputter deposition of metal films, metal stripping in wet chemicals, and final silicidation by rapid thermal processing. This process sequence warrants an invariant amount of metal intermixed with Si in the substrate surface region independent of the initial metal thickness, thereby leading to a self-limiting formation of ultrathin silicide films. The crystallographic structure, thickness, uniformity, and morphological stability of the final silicide films depend sensitively on the initial Pt fraction. © 2010 American Institute of Physics.