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STE35 New improved three-chamber MBE System for conventional semiconductors growth of A3B5 and A3N

STE35 is a modern technological platform for precision growth of epitaxial layers on wafers with diameter up to ∅100mm, as well as three 2” wafers in one process. STE35 MBE System is intended for R&D activities and pilot production of epitaxial heterostructures in “lab to fab” mode in InAlGaAsSb or InGaAlN systems. STE35 was developed by SemiTEq as a result of more than 25 years' experience of our key MBE experts. Optimal growth geometry allows to achieve high excellence thickness and composition uniformity on ∅100mm wafer.

Additional uniformity optimization is possible due to changing source-to-substrate distance (unique vertical movement of the wafer and heater at the same time). STE35 is a three-chamber UHV System including individually pumped growth chamber, buffer/outgassing chamber for pregrowth preparation and load-lock chamber. All the chambers connected through vacuum gates and common semi-automatic wafer transfer system. The growth process is controlled by automation system based on original software. It allows to control process manually or in auto mode using previously written recipe.

• growth chamber with a vertical growth geometry pumped by Ion pump/Cryopump for conventional III-Vs or TMP/Cryopumpfor III-Nitrides, sublimation pump
• 10×63 CF ports for effusion cells with shutters, 1 central 63 CF (preferable for NH3 in III-N version) and up to 3×40 CF extraports without shutters for V-group material valve crackers or gas source (Si2H4, etc.); pyrometer or laser interferometry ports
• all effusion cells are visible through several viewports on the growth chamber
• single LN2 cryopanel, effectively surrounding the growth volume, large surface for effective pumping of NH3 in a III-N version
• growth manipulator heating element based on PBN/PG/PBN, providing high heating uniformity and fast up and down dynamic
• maximum substrate temperature up to 1200°С in III-N version (Ti back coating of the substrate)
• in-situ monitoring tools: RHEED, IR pyrometer, mass-spectrometer and laser reflectometry (for III-Nitrides growth)
• retractible BFM for direct fluxes measurement
• preparation chamber with storage cassette for wafer holders and wafers bakeout stage, special port for H2 passivation
• load lock chamber with storage cassette for (up to 8 pcs.) wafer holders with quick access door equipped with glove box
• set of substrate holders
• bakeout system till 200°C, without hot spot formation
• control electronics and vacuumeters
• process control system based on original software

• “lab to fab” ideology, allowing carrying out activities from fundamental research to pilot production of heterostructures
• special effusion cells for Al (cold lip) for stable operation and Ga (hot lip) for obtaining of structures with low density of oval defects
• sufficient tools for in-situ monitoring of growth process in basic configuration
• specially designed growth manipulator, providing high temperature uniformity and heating/cooling rate dynamic
• rapid process start up due to intensive technological support
• simple System operation and regular technical maintenance

Ultimate residual vacuum in growth chamber

after bakeout

<5·10-11 Torr

Max. diameter of wafer

100 mm or 3х2” block

“Effusion cell to wafer” distance

135÷210 mm

Effusion cells shutters design

rotary mechanism based on magnetically

couplet rotary motion with non-impact

pneumatic drive

Material of shutters blades

tantalum (standard),

molybdenum, PBN — optional

Design of growth manipulator heating element

PBN/PG/PBN

Max. process temperature of growth

manipulator, not less

900°С 
(1100°C for III-Nitrides in PA-GaN version)

Temperature of wafer degassing in preparation

chamber, not less

650°С

Bakeout temperature of growth chamber,

not less

200°С

Ion pumps capacity:

– growth chamber

– preparation chamber

– load lock

800 l/s

500 l/s

300 l/s