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Wet NanoBonding of Semiconducting Surfaces Optimized via Surface Energy Modification using Three Liquid Contact Angle Analysis as a Metrology

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Semiconductor wafers are analyzed and their total surface energy γT is measured in three components according to the van Oss theory: (1) γLW, surface energy due to Lifshitz-van der Waals forces or dipole interactions, (2) γ+, surface energy due to

Semiconductor wafers are analyzed and their total surface energy γT is measured in three components according to the van Oss theory: (1) γLW, surface energy due to Lifshitz-van der Waals forces or dipole interactions, (2) γ+, surface energy due to interactions with electron donors, and (3) γ–, surface energy due to interactions with electron acceptors. Surface energy is measured via Three Liquid Contact Angle Analysis (3LCAA), a method of contact angle measurement using the sessile drop technique and three liquids: water, glycerin, and α-bromonaphthalene. This research optimizes the experimental methods of 3LCAA, proving that the technique produces reproducible measurements for surface energy on a variety of surfaces. Wafer surfaces are prepared via thermal oxidation, rapid thermal oxidation, ion beam oxidation, rapid thermal annealing, hydrofluoric acid etching, the RCA clean, the Herbots-Atluri (H-A) process, and the dry and wet anneals used for Dry and Wet NanoBonding™, respectively.
NanoBonding™ is a process for growing molecular bonds between semiconducting surfaces to create a hermetic seal. NanoBonding™ prevents fluid percolation, protecting integrated electronic sensors from corrosive mobile ion species such as sodium. This can extend the lifetime of marine sensors and glucose sensors from less than one week to over two years, dramatically reducing costs and improving quality of life for diabetic patients. Surface energy measurement is critical to understanding and optimizing NanoBonding™. Surface energies are modified through variations on the H-A process, and measured via 3LCAA. The majority of this research focuses on silicon oxide surfaces.
This is the first quantitative measurement of gallium arsenide surface energy in three components. GaAs is a III-V semiconductor with potential commercial use in transistors, but its oxide layer slowly evaporates over time. In subsequent research, 3LCAA may prove key to developing a stable GaAs oxide layer.

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2016-05

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Mechanics of silicon electrodes in lithium ion batteries

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As one of the most promising materials for high capacity electrode in next generation of lithium ion batteries, silicon has attracted a great deal of attention in recent years. Advanced characterization techniques and atomic simulations helped to depict that the

As one of the most promising materials for high capacity electrode in next generation of lithium ion batteries, silicon has attracted a great deal of attention in recent years. Advanced characterization techniques and atomic simulations helped to depict that the lithiation/delithiation of silicon electrode involves processes including large volume change (anisotropic for the initial lithiation of crystal silicon), plastic flow or softening of material dependent on composition, electrochemically driven phase transformation between solid states, anisotropic or isotropic migration of atomic sharp interface, and mass diffusion of lithium atoms. Motivated by the promising prospect of the application and underlying interesting physics, mechanics coupled with multi-physics of silicon electrodes in lithium ion batteries is studied in this dissertation. For silicon electrodes with large size, diffusion controlled kinetics is assumed, and the coupled large deformation and mass transportation is studied. For crystal silicon with small size, interface controlled kinetics is assumed, and anisotropic interface reaction is studied, with a geometry design principle proposed. As a preliminary experimental validation, enhanced lithiation and fracture behavior of silicon pillars via atomic layer coatings and geometry design is studied, with results supporting the geometry design principle we proposed based on our simulations. Through the work documented here, a consistent description and understanding of the behavior of silicon electrode is given at continuum level and some insights for the future development of the silicon electrode are provided.

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2014