IITC 2017
Conference paper

Reliable airgap BEOL technology in advanced 48 nm pitch copper/ULK interconnects for substantial power and performance benefits

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This paper demonstrates the first reliable and low cost airgap BEOL technology, generated at extremely tight dimensions (48 nm pitch) in Cu/ULK. This provides 20% nested-line capacitance reduction relative to the ungapped Cu/ULK baseline. This result is of critical importance, as it validates that airgaps can be extended down to ultrafine wire levels, such as for the 10 nm technology node. Current technologies implement airgaps only at fat-wire levels; however, a significant enhancement in chip performance can be gained by including airgaps in the finest wiring levels as well. To achieve this, we benefitted from several elements which address various process, integration, and reliability challenges associated with airgap formation at such small dimensions. We present data and explanations of these solutions, and their impacts on yield, performance, defectivity and reliability (EM and TDDB).