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Micro-structural characterization of low resistive metallic Ni germanide growth on annealing of Ni-Ge multilayer
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Nickel-Germanides are an important class of metal semiconductor alloys because of their suitability in microelectronics applications. Here we report successful formation and detailed characterization of NiGe metallic alloy phase at the interfaces of a Ni-Ge multilayer on controlled annealing at relatively low temperature ∼ 250 °C. Using x-ray and polarized neutron reflectometry, we could estimate the width of the interfacial alloys formed with nanometer resolution and found the alloy stoichiometry to be equiatomic NiGe, a desirable low-resistance interconnect. We found significant drop in resistance (∼ 50%) on annealing the Ni-Ge multilayer suggesting metallic nature of alloy phase at the interfaces. Further we estimated the resistivity of the alloy phase to be ∼ 59μΩ cm.
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