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While the physical properties of silica make it suitable for use in protective and optical coating applications, the biggest application of insulating SiO 2 thin films is undoubtedly in semiconductor devices, in which the insulator performs a number of specific tasks, including: surface passivation, field effect transistor (FET) gate layer, isolation layers, planarization and packaging.

The term insulator generally refers to a material that exhibits low thermal or electrical conductivity; electrically insulating materials are also called dielectrics. It is in regard to the high resistance to the flow of an electric current that SiO 2 thin films are of the greatest commercial importance. The dielectric constant (ε) is a measure of a dielectric materials ability to store charge, and is characterized by the electrostatic energy stored per unit volume across a unit potential gradient. The magnitude of ε is an indication of the degree of polarization or charge displacement within a material. The dielectric constant for air is 1, and for ionic solids is generally in the range of 5 - 10. Dielectric constants are defined as the ratio of the material’s capacitance to that of air, i.e., [link] . The dielectric constant for silicon dioxide ranges from 3.9 to 4.9, for thermally and plasma CVD grown films, respectively.

An insulating layer is a film or deposited layer of dielectric material separating or covering conductive layers. Ideally, in these application an insulating material should have a surface resistivity of greater than 10 13 Ω/cm 2 or a volume resistivity of greater than 10 11 Ω.cm. However, for some applications, lower values are acceptable; an electrical insulator is generally accepted to have a resistivity greater than 10 5 Ω.cm. CVD SiO 2 thin films have a resistivity of 10 6 - 10 16 Ω.cm, depending on the film growth method.

As a consequence of its dielectric properties SiO 2 , and related silicas, are used for isolating conducting layers, to facilitate the diffusion of dopants from doped oxides, as diffusion and ion implantation masks, capping doped films to prevent loss of dopant, for gettering impurities, for protection against moisture and oxidation, and for electronic passivation. Of the many methods used for the deposition of thin films, chemical vapor deposition (CVD) is most often used for semiconductor processing. In order to appreciate the unique problems associated with the CVD of insulating SiO 2 thin films it is worth first reviewing some of their applications. Summarized below are three areas of greatest importance to the fabrication of contemporary semiconductor devices: isolation and gate insulation, passivation, and planarization.

Device isolation and gate insulation

A microcircuit may be described as a collection of devices each consisting of "an assembly of active and passive components, interconnected within a monolithic block of semiconducting material". Each device is required to be isolated from adjacent devices in order to allow for maximum efficiency of the overall circuit. Furthermore within a device, contacts must also be electrically isolated. While there are a number of methods for isolating individual devices within a circuit (reverse-biased junctions, mesa isolation, use of semi-insulating substrates, and oxide isolation), the isolation of the active components in a single device is almost exclusively accomplished by the deposition of an insulator.

Questions & Answers

anyone have book of Abdel Salam Hamdy Makhlouf book in pdf Fundamentals of Nanoparticles: Classifications, Synthesis
Naeem Reply
what happen with The nano material on The deep space.?
pedro Reply
It could change the whole space science.
the characteristics of nano materials can be studied by solving which equation?
sibaram Reply
plz answer fast
synthesis of nano materials by chemical reaction taking place in aqueous solvents under high temperature and pressure is call?
hydrothermal synthesis
how can chip be made from sand
Eke Reply
is this allso about nanoscale material
are nano particles real
Missy Reply
Hello, if I study Physics teacher in bachelor, can I study Nanotechnology in master?
Lale Reply
no can't
where is the latest information on a no technology how can I find it
where we get a research paper on Nano chemistry....?
Maira Reply
nanopartical of organic/inorganic / physical chemistry , pdf / thesis / review
what are the products of Nano chemistry?
Maira Reply
There are lots of products of nano chemistry... Like nano coatings.....carbon fiber.. And lots of others..
Even nanotechnology is pretty much all about chemistry... Its the chemistry on quantum or atomic level
no nanotechnology is also a part of physics and maths it requires angle formulas and some pressure regarding concepts
Preparation and Applications of Nanomaterial for Drug Delivery
Hafiz Reply
Application of nanotechnology in medicine
has a lot of application modern world
what is variations in raman spectra for nanomaterials
Jyoti Reply
ya I also want to know the raman spectra
I only see partial conversation and what's the question here!
Crow Reply
what about nanotechnology for water purification
RAW Reply
please someone correct me if I'm wrong but I think one can use nanoparticles, specially silver nanoparticles for water treatment.
yes that's correct
I think
Nasa has use it in the 60's, copper as water purification in the moon travel.
nanocopper obvius
what is the stm
Brian Reply
is there industrial application of fullrenes. What is the method to prepare fullrene on large scale.?
industrial application...? mmm I think on the medical side as drug carrier, but you should go deeper on your research, I may be wrong
STM - Scanning Tunneling Microscope.
How we are making nano material?
Some times this process occur naturally. if not, nano engineers build nano materials. they have different physical and chemical properties.
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Source:  OpenStax, Chemistry of electronic materials. OpenStax CNX. Aug 09, 2011 Download for free at http://cnx.org/content/col10719/1.9
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