Fabrication of piezoelectric AlN thin film for FBARs

Wei Kuo Liu, Kok Wan Tay, Sin Cha Kuo, Menq-Jiun Wu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Citations (Scopus)


This paper focuses on the fabrication of film bulk acoustic-wave resonator (FBAR) comprising an aluminum nitride (AlN) piezoelectric thin film sandwiched between two metal electrodes and located on a silicon substrate with a low-stress silicon nitride (Si3N4) support membrane for high frequency wireless applications, and analyzes the optimization of the thin AlN film deposition parameters on Mo electrodes using the reactive RF magnetron sputter system. Several critical parameters of the sputtering process such as RF power and Ar/N2 flow rate ratio were studied to clarify their effects on different electrodes characteristics of the AlN films. The experiment indicated that the process for Mo electrode was easier compared with that of the Pt/Ti or Au/Cr bi-layer electrode as it entailed only one photo resist and metal deposition step. Besides, Pt/Ti or Au/Cr electrodes reduced the resonance frequency due to their high mass density and low bulk acoustic velocity. Compared with the case of the Al bottom electrode, there is no evident amorphous layer between the Mo bottom electrode and the deposited AlN film. The characteristics of the FBAR devices depend not only upon the thickness and quality of the AlN film, but also upon the thickness of the top electrode and the materials used. The results indicate that decreasing the thickness of either the AlN film or the top electrode increases the resonance frequency. This suggests the potential of tuning the performance of the FBAR device by carefully controlling AlN film thickness. Besides, increasing either the thickness of the AlN film or higher RF power has improved a stronger c-axis orientation and tended to promote a narrower rocking curve full-width at half-maximum (FWHM), but increased both the grain size and the surface roughness. An FBAR device fabricated under optimal AlN deposition parameters has demonstrated the effective electromechanical coupling coefficient (k eff 2 ) and the quality factor (Q f x ) are about 1.5% and 332, respectively.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)226-232
Number of pages7
JournalScience in China, Series G: Physics, Mechanics and Astronomy
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2009 Feb 1

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Physics and Astronomy(all)

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