We present an analytic model for the post-breakdown conduction through thin gate oxides in MOS structures. The breakdown paths across the oxide film are considered to behave as mesoscopic quantum point contacts in which discrete transverse energy levels arise as a consequence of the lateral confinement of the electrons' wave functions. In the longitudinal direction, such levels are viewed by the incoming electrons as effective potential barriers which can act as transmitting or backscattering conduction channels. We show that the existence of these levels gives rise to the so-called nonlinear conduction regime. © 2000 Elsevier Science Ltd. All rights reserved.
|Publication status||Published - 1 Dec 2000|