Established in 1995, the SNF provides the Centre for Quantum Computer Technology with the capability for the fabrication of semiconductor and metal nanostructured devices with feature sizes approaching 10 nm. It plays a critical role through the provision of prototype quantum logical devices and other semiconductor test structures required for research across all of the Centre's nodes.
Now in its eighth year of operation, the SNF houses cleanroom laboratories containing a comprehensive collection of micro-electronic and nano-electronic equipment for fabricating an array of silicon (Si) and gallium arsenide (GaAs) devices. Extending over 300 m2 and two floors, the SNF contains four laboratory areas offering differing cleanroom environments. Each floor has 50 m2 of environmentally controlled class 3.5 cleanroom. This cleanroom environment is maintained by a vertical laminar air handling system. In addition, there are also approximately 135 m2 of class 350 cleanroom space. A further plant area accommodates the air conditioning units and the laboratory services including ultra-pure recirculated de-ionised water, gaseous nitrogen, vacuum, cooling water exhaust extraction.
Top Left: Class 3.5 clean-rooms at UNSW's Semiconductor Nanofabrication Facility (SNF).
Top Right: Silicon 100 mm wafer furnace.
Middle Left: Atomic force microscope.
Middle Right: Plasma, etch and deposition systems housed in class 350 clean area.
Bottom Left: Change Room for class 3.5 area.
Bottom Right: FEI XL30 EBL System.
The lower floor cleanroom houses equipment geared for nanoscale structure fabrication. The key instruments within this laboratory are electron beam lithography systems which are used for nanoscale lithography and high resolution imaging. In November 2002, a specifically designed acoustic and electromagnetic noise shielding enclosure was fitted around the high-resolution FEI XL30S system to further improve resolution. The addition of this enclosure has provided metal linewidths below 12 nm and an imaging resolution of better than 1.5 nm. In 2003, a new FEI Sirion FESEM was added to the EBL suite which is also capable of these resolutions. Also within this laboratory are various nanolithography facilities, including systems and services for UV lithography, metal deposition, atomic force microscopy and wet chemical processing.
The upper floor cleanroom is furnished with an array of facilities for producing microscale silicon devices. It mirrors the lower level lab for UV lithography and processing facilities, but also houses equipment and services such as high temperature furnaces for oxidation and diffusion processes, a rapid thermal annealer and more extensive wet chemical process lines. Also located on the upper level within a class 350 environment is the Special Gases Facility. This comprises a suite of facilities for chemical vapour deposition and plasma processing and is serviced from rooftop gas storage and delivery units.
In the class 350 environments, a collection of plasma processing and chemical vapour deposition systems, bonding stations and measurement tools complement the 3.5 area facilities. The SNF laboratories are maintained by 5 full-time professional and technical staff.
Top left: New rapid thermal annealing system.
Bottom Left: New custom-built acoustic and electromagnetic noise shielding enclosure for XL30 EBL system.
Right: Custom-modified multi-angle evaporator with automated stage, stage cooling and heating and controlled oxidation chamber.