Low Activation Temperature Au/Ti Getter Films for Wafer-Level Vacuum Packaging
Vacuum packaging is required for mechanical microresonators and microbolometers to obtain a high quality factor and a low heat loss respectively. Because the internal volume of wafer-level packages is small, integration of getter films in the cavity is needed to maintain a low internal pressure (<10-2 mbar) for a long period of time (several years or more) even if a highly hermetic wafer bonding process is used [1,2]. Many Non-Evaporable Getter (NEG) films based on sputtered highly reactive transition metal have been investigated for this purpose. In this work we investigate thermal diffusion of titanium through an ultrathin capping Au layer as an alternative way to produce a getter film activated at low temperature. Both films were evaporated to avoid rare gas contamination found in sputtered films which can outgas afterwards. 
The films have been annealed in N2 and Ti out-diffusion from Au/Ti thin films was studied as a function of the annealing temperature using four probe resistivity measurements, spectroscopic ellipsometry, XPS analysis, residual stress variations, SEM cross section observations and Energy Dispersive X-Ray Spectrometry (EDX) measurements. These measurements were completed by AFM and SEM surface analyses. All results are consistent and support the occurrence of significant Ti out-diffusion followed by oxidation, even at low temperature (<300°C). The electrical resistivity already increases by 10% after 1 hour annealing at 200°C. XPS measurements confirm the presence of a TiOx layer after annealing which contribution increases with the temperature and with a composition close to x » 1.8. SEM and AFM images of the as-deposited films surface show a smooth surface of gold, with RMS roughness below 1.5 nm. After annealing at 300°C, the titanium oxide is visible at the surface, in a shape of flakes and after annealing at 350°C, this layer covers completely the gold. Analysis of the sample cross-section shows that after annealing the gold layer is buried under the TiOx layer, that this layer is continuous and that its depth, corresponding to the TiOx thickness, increases with the annealing temperature (see fig., left-SE and right-BSE). Finally, TiOx films of several nm can be obtained by diffusion of the Ti through the Au at low temperature, showing that Au/Ti film can be used as a low temperature getter film for wafer-level vacuum packaging.
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