10. Mechanical Reliability of Low-k Dielectrics

  1. Mikhail R. Baklanov3,
  2. Paul S. Ho4 and
  3. Ehrenfried Zschech5
  1. Kris Vanstreels3,
  2. Han Li1 and
  3. Joost J. Vlassak2

Published Online: 17 FEB 2012

DOI: 10.1002/9781119963677.ch10

Advanced Interconnects for ULSI Technology

Advanced Interconnects for ULSI Technology

How to Cite

Vanstreels, K., Li, H. and Vlassak, J. J. (2012) Mechanical Reliability of Low-k Dielectrics, in Advanced Interconnects for ULSI Technology (eds M. R. Baklanov, P. S. Ho and E. Zschech), John Wiley & Sons, Ltd, Chichester, UK. doi: 10.1002/9781119963677.ch10

Editor Information

  1. 3

    IMEC, Kapeldreef 75, B-3001 Leuven, Belgium

  2. 4

    Lab for Interconnect and Packaging, The University of Texas at Austin, UT-PRC 10100 Burnet Road, Bldg 160, Mail Code R8650, Austin, TX 78758, USA

  3. 5

    Fraunhofer Institute for Non-Destructive Testing IZFP, Dresden Branch, Maria-Reiche-Strasse 2, 01109 Dresden, Germany

Author Information

  1. 1

    IBM Research Division, Thomas J. Watson Research Center, Yorktown Heights, NY 10598, USA

  2. 2

    School of Engineering and Applied Sciences, Harvard University, Cambridge, MA 02138, USA

  3. 3

    IMEC, Kapeldreef 75, B-3001 Leuven, Belgium

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 17 FEB 2012
  2. Published Print: 24 FEB 2012

ISBN Information

Print ISBN: 9780470662540

Online ISBN: 9781119963677



  • thin films;
  • Young's modulus;
  • fracture;
  • adhesion


Integration of porous dielectric materials into microelectronic devices has become crucial for next-generation integrated circuit interconnect technology. However, due to their inherent mechanical weakness, reliability of copper/low-k structures is a serious concern. Therefore, achieving sufficient mechanical properties and good adhesion of these dielectric materials to the surrounding layers becomes necessary to ensure thermomechanical integrity, especially in the case of highly porous low-k dielectrics. In this chapter, the mechanical and fracture properties of low-k materials are discussed in detail, with a focus on hybrid low-k dielectrics. For each of these properties, an overview of the most commonly used measurement techniques is given, followed by several case studies. These case studies include the impact of film porosity, organic porogen content, UV radiation, organic cross-linking and/or terminal groups on the mechanical properties of organosilicate glasses. Furthermore, the effect of porosity, network structure, UV radiation and reactive species in the environment on the fracture behavior of organosilicate glass films is discussed in detail.