Hexagonal boron nitride (hBN) has emerged as a fundamentally and technologically important material system owing to its unique physical properties including layered structure, wide energy bandgap, large optical absorption, and neutron capture cross section. As for any materials under development, it is necessary to establish device processing techniques to realize active devices based on hBN. The authors report on the advancements in dry etching techniques for active devices based on hBN epilayers via inductively coupled plasma (ICP). The effect of ICP radio frequency (RF) power on the etch rate and vertical side wall profile was studied. The etching depth and angle with respect to the surface were measured using atomic force microscopy showing that an etching rate ∼1.25 μm/min and etching angles >80° were obtained. Profilometer data and scanning electron microscope images confirmed these results. This work demonstrates that SF6 is very suitable for etching hBN epilayers in RF plasma environments and can serve as a guide for future hBN device processing.
|Journal||Journal of Vacuum Science and Technology A: Vacuum, Surfaces and Films|
|State||Published - Nov 2013|