In situ infrared absorption spectroscopy of dusty plasmas

G.M.W. Kroesen, J.H.W.G. Boer, den, L. Boufendi, F. Vivet, M. Khouli, A. Bouchoule, F.J. Hoog, de

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In situ, time-resolved Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy was used to study particulate formation in rf discharges in mixtures of silane, argon, and nitrogen. The spectra were taken at a maximum rate of 20 Hz. The discharge conditions were chosen such that previous calibrations of the time evolutions of particle size and density could be used. The measurements indicate that the onset of the solid-state vibrational absorptions of the SiH and SiH2 bands only takes place after the nucleation and coagulation phase have finished; it coincides with the previously predicted start of the deposition of amorphous hydrogenated silicon on the particles. The dissociation of the silane feed gas is found to be in the range of 30%, and its time development suggests that also the large-scale dissociation of silane only starts after the coagulation phase. This is in agreement with previously observed trends for the electron temperature. If silicon partilces are grown in the plasma, and the silane flow is stopped, the Si particles stay trapped in the glow. The infrared measurements, however, show that they almost completely oxidize: the SiH/SiH2 vibrations disappear and a strong SiO vibration appears. If nitrogen gas is allowed into the plasma, the SiO vibration is replaced by a SiN vibration. © 1996 American Vacuum Society
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)546-549
JournalJournal of Vacuum Science and Technology A: Vacuum, Surfaces, and Films
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1996


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