Samco offers multiple ICP plasma etching (ICP-RIE) systems to meet each customer’s process needs for plasma etching.
Our ICP plasma etching systems are able to process various types of materials (silicon, dielectrics, III-V compound semiconductor, metals, polymer, resist and more) from small samples/wafers to 300 mm.
Load-lock ICP Etch Systems
A Load lock system has a reaction chamber, and a separate loading chamber. The addition of a loadlock allows the reaction chamber to stay under vacuum. The controlled environment improves process repeatability. Load lock systems are also typically required when using corrosive or toxic gases such as Chlorine, and when the etch by-products are harmful.
The RIE-400iP and RIE-800iP are high precision Inductively Coupled Plasma etching systems that can be used to etch all types of semiconducting, insulating and metallic films. They include all the features of the open-load ICP, and can be customized with additional options that are required for etching specific materials.
Atmospheric Cassette ICP-RIE Systems
For Fluorine or organic based chemistries the addition of an atmospheric cassette to a reaction chamber may be the ideal solution to increase throughput. The RIE-100iPC is an Inductively Coupled Plasma etch system that includes a single or dual cassette coupled to an atmospheric robot and wafer aligner. The robot has vacuum suction that allows for high speed wafer transfer, and the alignment station guarantees loading accuracy.
In this configuration the reaction chamber is rapidly vented to unload, and then load a new wafer. After the reaction chamber slit valve closes, the chamber is pumped to process pressure, and after the process completes, the cycle is repeated.
The RIE-100iPC includes all the features of the open-load platform. An optional e-chuck increases heat transfer from the substrate during processing.
Vacuum Cassette ICP-RIE Systems
Vacuum Cassette systems are typically used when processes require a controlled environment, corrosive/ toxic gases such as Chlorine are being used, or when the etch by-products are harmful. In this configuration the Reaction chamber is coupled to a transfer chamber with vacuum robot, and an additional Loading chamber includes a vacuum cassette elevator.
The RIE-230iPC, RIE-330iPC and RIE-400iPC are cassette based high precision Inductively Coupled Plasma etching systems that can be used to etch all types of semiconducting, insulating and metallic films. They include all the features of the open-load ICP, and have additional options that are required for etching specific materials.
ICP-RIE Process Examples
Samco ICP etch systems provide repeatable dry etching solutions of a wide variety of materials including
- Dielectrics – SiO2 (Quartz), SiNx, High-K and Low-K
- Compound Semiconductors – GaN, GaAs, InP, SiC and More
- Metals – Aluminum, Titanium, Moly and Metal Alloys
- Polymer and Photoresist – Polyimide, Parylene, SU-8 and More
- Other Materials – Sapphire, Diamond, LiNbO3, LiTaO3, PZT, ITO, AlN and More
The systems and processes are applicable to both R&D and production. Please check our Process Data Page for our dry etch process capabilities.
Anisotropic InP etching for waveguide fabrication
Anisotropic AlGaAs etching for VCSEL fabrication
Die singulation of GaAs substrate
ICP-RIE System Features
Unique Tornado Coil
The three dimensional coil generates high ion density and enables high-uniformity plasma etching over the wafers for nano-scale structure fabrication.
Planar ICP Coil
Generates high-density plasma, and suitable for high-rate plasma etching with high RF power.
Cone-shape ICP Coil
Capable of stable plasma discharge at lower pressures, and allowing low-damage plasma etching at low temperatures to achieve reliable and repeatable ICP-RIE processes.
Tornado Coil (SSTC)
Auto-matching unit works as a RF power divider to inner and outer coil, and enables high etch uniformity over a large area.
Height-adjustable lower electrode (air operated) enables optimization of the distance between the wafer and ICP plasma source to achieve uniform plasma etching over the wafer.
Improves etch uniformity over the wafers and process repeatability.