Degradation of polycrystalline HfO<inf>2</inf>-based gate dielectrics under nanoscale electrical stress

V. Iglesias, M. Lanza, K. Zhang, A. Bayerl, M. Porti, M. Nafria, X. Aymerich, G. Benstteter, Z. Y. Shen, G. Bersuker

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36 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The evolution of the electrical properties of HfO2/SiO 2/Si dielectric stacks under electrical stress has been investigated using atomic force microscope-based techniques. The current through the grain boundaries (GBs), which is found to be higher than thorough the grains, is correlated to a higher density of positively charged defects at the GBs. Electrical stress produces different degradation kinetics in the grains and GBs, with a much shorter time to breakdown in the latter, indicating that GBs facilitate dielectric breakdown in high-k gate stacks. © 2011 American Institute of Physics.
Original languageEnglish
Article number103510
JournalApplied Physics Letters
Volume99
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 5 Sep 2011

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