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Newcastle University (United Kingdom)


Newcastle University traces its origins to 1834. It has 4500 staff and 17000 students. The Nano-Materials and Electronics Group is well known for its expertise in: strained Si/SiGe technology for high speed low power integrated circuits; SiC for high temperature high power electronics; nanoscale electrical and physical characterization; ferroelectrics for anoelectronics; biomedical applications for nanoelectronics; reliability of IC interconnects; high-k dielectrics; fabrication; modelling and technology CAD; defect engineering and diffusion; photovoltaics; Microsystems and sensors; nanotechnology.


Number of persons working in the Nanoelectronics field:



Main Research activities in Nanoelectronics

  • Deposition and rapid thermal processing of thin metal films for formation of intermetallic compounds and silicides.
  • Fabrication of ohmic and Schottky contacts on silicon carbide
  • Local implantation in patterned silicon and silicon carbide
  • Post-implantation structure and surface recovery of silicon carbide
  • Oxidation and deposition of high-k dielectrics on silicon and silicon carbide
  • RIE patterning of silicon, silicon oxide and silicon carbide
  • Sub-nm depth profiling of strain and composition (Si, SiGe)
  • Nanoscale strain measurements using TERS with complementary finite element modeling
  • Simultaneous evaluation of surface roughness, strain and related defects
  • Real-time monitoring of strain/morphology evolution on a nanoscale during thermal processing
  • Determining thin epitaxial layer thickness and composition
  • Defect identification: misfit dislocations, stacking faults and threading dislocations
  • Sub-nm depth profiling for doping/mobility data in Si and strained Si
  • TCAD modeling and simulation for validation of device performance
  • Ab initio modelling– defects, diffusion, band structure of heavily doped Si, solubility of dopants
  • KLMC – extension of length and time scales; dynamical effects
  • Analytical gate leakage modeling
  • High and low frequency noise measurements
  • Techniques to eliminate the impact of leakage in C-V analysis of advanced gate stacks,
  • Conventional I-V and C-V analysis
  • Interface trap density, conductance technique 3 level charge pumping
  • AC conductance measurements for self heating analysis
  • Split CV for determining channel mobility
  • Electrical characterization at elevated temperature


Research facilities


• More than 200 m2 of fabrication space including  20 m2 Class 100 and 100 m2 Class 1000/10000 clean rooms
• Processing cluster from Oxford Instruments including Plasmalab System 400 magnetron sputter and FlexAL plasma-assisted atomic layer deposition (ALD) tool for ALD and sputter deposition on 8” substrates; ALD module can be configured for thermal or plasma-assisted deposition of a wide range of oxide and nitride materials
• JetFirst bench top rapid thermal processing (RTP) processor for oxidation and annealing wafers up to 200 mm in vacuum and various gases
• Plasma-Therm 790 series reactive ion etching (RIE) machine for processing wafers up to 200 mm
• JIPELEC RTP furnace specified for SiC post-implantation annealing at temperatures up to 2000С
• Two furnaces for oxidation in nitric oxide, dry and wet oxygen
• Edwards coating systems with thermal and e-beam target evaporating
• Two class 100 vertical laminar flow workstations with extraction for wet chemical processing
• Contact photolithography tools and equipment


Characterization and modelling:

• Climate controlled characterization facilities
• nm resolution Raman spectroscopy, including TERS and thermal measurements
• Combined AFM (resolution>0.01nm)/Raman (resolution>20MPa) mapping
• Conductive AFM, SCM
• Differential Hall
• Ellipsometry
• 4155C Parameter Analyzer with 41501B Pulse Generator extension
• 4294A LCR Bridge
• Thermal chuck attached to probe station
• TCAD and computational modeling
• Finite element strain modeling
• Accurate defect etching
• E8361A PNA Network Analyzer









Anthony O'Neill