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1. WO2002025695 - TUNABLE FOCUS RING FOR PLASMA PROCESSING

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[ EN ]

CLAIMS
What is claimed is:

1. A focus ring assembly apparatus for a plasma reactor system for processing a workpiece having an outer edge and an upper surface, comprising:

a) a ring electrode;

b) a focus ring made of nonconductive material arranged atop, and insulated from, said ring electrode;

c) a first RF power supply electrically connected to said focus ring electrode; and

d) a tuning network arranged between said first RF power supply and said ring electrode.

2. The apparatus according to claim 1, wherein said tuning network includes a variable capacitor and an inductor.

3. An apparatus according to claim 1, further including a match network between said first RF power supply and said tuning network.

4. The apparatus according to claim 1, further comprising a workpiece support member having a lower electrode capable of supporting the workpiece, a base surrounding said lower electrode and including a focus ring support surface, and an insulating region between said lower electrode and said base, wherein said focus ring support surface supports said ring electrode.

5. The apparatus according to claim 4, wherein said first power supply is electrically connected to said lower electrode.

6. An apparatus according to claim 1, further comprising an adjustable shaft supporting said ring electrode and operatively connected to a drive motor for moving the shaft so as to change the position of the focus ring relative to the workpiece upper surface.

7. A focus ring assembly apparatus for a plasma reactor system for processing a workpiece having an outer edge and an upper surface, comprising:

a) a focus ring support surface arranged around the workpiece outer edge,

wherein said focus ring support surface is part of a workpiece support member having a lower electrode capable of supporting the workpiece, a base surrounding said lower electrode, and an insulating region between said lower electrode and said base, wherein said focus ring support surface is part of said base;

b) a ring electrode arranged atop said focus ring support surface;

c) a focus ring made of nonconductive material arranged atop said ring electrode;

d) a first RF power supply electrically connected to said focus ring electrode; and

e) a second RF power supply electrically connected to said lower electrode.

8. A plasma reactor system for processing a workpiece having an upper surface and an outer edge, comprising:

a) a reactor chamber having an upper wall, a lower wall and sidewalls that define an interior region and capable of supporting a plasma;

b) an upper electrode arranged in said interior region near said upper wall;

c) a workpiece support member arranged adjacent said lower wall and comprising a lower electrode having an upper surface for supporting the workpiece, an insulating region surrounding the lower electrode, and a base surrounding the insulating region, the base having a focus ring support surface;

d) an upper electrode RF power supply electrically connected to said upper electrode; and

e) the focus ring assembly apparatus according to claim 4, wherein said first RF power supply is also electrically connected to said lower electrode.

9. The reactor system according to claim 8, further including a match network arranged between said upper electrode power supply and said upper electrode.

10. The reactor system according to claim 8, further including means for adjusting the vertical position of said focus ring relative to the workpiece upper surface.

11. The reactor system according to claim 8, further including:

a) a gas supply system in pneumatic communication with said interior region;

b) a vacuum system in pneumatic communication with said interior region; and

c) a control system electrically connected to said upper electrode power supply, said gas supply system, said vacuum system, and said first RF power supply, for controlling the operation of the reactor system.

12. A plasma reactor system for processing a workpiece having an upper surface and an outer edge, comprising:

a) a reactor chamber having an upper wall, a lower wall and sidewalls that define an interior region and capable of supporting a plasma;

b) an upper electrode arranged in said interior region near said upper wall;

c) an upper electrode RF power supply electrically connected to said upper electrode; and

d) the focus ring assembly apparatus according to claim 7.

13. The reactor system according to claim 12, further including a match network arranged between said upper electrode power supply and said upper electrode.

14. The reactor system according to claim 12, further including means for adjusting the position of said focus ring relative to the workpiece upper surface.

15. The reactor system according to claim 12, further including:

a) a gas supply system in pneumatic communication with said interior region;

b) a vacuum system in pneumatic communication with said interior region; and

c) a control system electrically connected to said upper electrode RF power supply, said gas supply system, said vacuum system, and said first RF power supply and said second RF power supply, for controlling the operation of the reactor system.

16. A method of plasma processing a workpiece to a desired standard, the workpiece having an upper surface and an outer edge with a reactor system having a reactor chamber containing a focus ring arranged adjacent the workpiece outer edge and made of a material M and having a profile P, inner and outer radii (Ri and Ro), the ring being positioned a vertical distance D from the workpiece upper surface, wherein a ring electrode is arranged adjacent the focus ring, the system thus having a set A of variable process parameters {P, R, M, D}, the method comprising the steps of:

a) setting parameters A = {P, R, M, D} to initial values; and

b) processing one or more workpieces while varying one or more of said process parameters to determine an optimized set of process parameters A*= {P*, R*, M*, D*} that provide the desired processing to within a predetermined standard.

17. The method according to claim 16, wherein the reactor system further has a tuning network electrically connecting the ring electrode to an RF power supply, the tuning network has an indicator with an inductance I and a capacitor with a capacitance C, the parameter set A includes I and C, and the optimized set A* includes I* and C*.

18. A method according to claim 17, wherein said step b) includes the steps of:

i) forming a first plasma within the reactor chamber having characteristics corresponding to said process parameters and processing a first workpiece for a predetermined process time;

ii) measuring the uniformity of the processing of the first workpiece; and

iii) comparing the workpiece process uniformity to a predetermined standard.

19. A method according to claim 18, wherein said step b) further includes the step of:

iv) reducing the workpiece process non-uniformity by changing at least one of said process parameters and repeating said steps i) through iii) using one of said first workpiece or a workpiece other than said first workpiece, until the workpiece process non-uniformity is less than said predetermined standard.

20. A method according to claim 19, wherein said step b) further includes the step of:

v) recording the set of optimized process parameters.

21. A method of processing a workpiece to be processed according to claim 17, further including the steps, after said step b), of:

c) providing a workpiece to be processed in the reactor chamber;

d) forming an optimized plasma with the process chamber using the set of optimized process parameters determined in said step b); and

e) processing the workpiece to be processed with the optimized plasma.