Silver-Nanoparticle-Based Etch Mask Control for Subwavelength Structure Development
St. Petersburg National Research University of Information Technologies, Mechanics and Optics.
Faculty of Health, Engineering and Science
Electron Science Research Institute
In this paper, we investigate the impact of silver thin film thickness and annealing temperatures for the fabrication of silver nano-particles of controlled size and spacing distributions. We also use these measured distributions to predict the performance of subwavelength grating structures developed using dry and isotropic etching of semiconductor substrates. Silver (Ag) thin films of different thicknesses were deposited on Si and GaAs semiconductor substrates and annealed at different temperatures. Experimental results demonstrate that by annealing the Ag thin films with different temperature profiles it is feasible to develop Ag nanoparticles of an average diameter ranging from 50 nm to 400 nm on silicon substrates and 100 nm to 500 nm on GaAs substrates. In addition, different subwavelength structures developed by etching the Ag nanoparticle deposited Si and GaAs substrates are simulated using a Finite-Difference Time Domain (FDTD) software package. Simulation results show that substantial reduction in light reflection can be achieved by optimizing the heights of the subwavelength structures through the control of the etching process time.