Dry plasma etching of GaAs vias in BCl3/Ar and Cl2/Ar plasmas

Y. W. Chen*, Boon Ooi, G. I. Ng, C. L. Tan, Y. C. Chan

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


We report the development and characterizations of GaAs via hole processes using BCl3/Ar and Cl2/Ar plasmas generated by an electron cyclotron resonance (ECR) system. The effect of the in- and out-diffuse of the reactive species and etch by-products, of the BCl3/Ar plasma, on the etch rate of the GaAs vias has been studied. The average GaAs etch rate was found to increase with increasing of both BCl3 and Cl2 flow rates. Under similar conditions, namely 800W microwave power, 150W RF power, 10sccm Ar flow rate, same (BCl3 or Cl2) flow rate, the etch rates of Cl2/Ar plasma were found to be 7-16 times higher than those of BCl3/Ar plasma. As the microwave power increased from 0 to 1500W, the etch rate increased by a factor of as large as 124 for the Cl2/Ar process. Etch rate as high as 6.7μm/min was observed from sample etched in Cl2/Ar plasma using a microwave power, RF power and process pressure of 800W, 150W and 50mTorr, respectively. Compared to the BCl3/Ar plasma, Cl2/Ar plasma is a better candidate, as this process gives higher etch rate and smoother etched surface.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)199-206
Number of pages8
JournalProceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering
StatePublished - Dec 1 1999
EventProceedings of the 1999 Design, Fabrication, and Characterization of Photonic Devices - Singapore, Singapore
Duration: Nov 30 1999Dec 3 1999

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Applied Mathematics
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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