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Dow Corning Electronics Receives U.S. Patent for New Method of Making Next-Generation Thin Films for Low-k Semiconductor Fabrication

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

New Deposition Technology Will Help Chipmakers Produce Better Insulators, Using Silicon Carbide and Silicon Oxycarbide Films

Midland, MI -- The Advanced Technologies and Ventures Business for Dow Corning Corporation has been awarded a U.S. patent on a new method for making low dielectric constant (low-k) silicon carbide (SiC) and hydrogenated silicon oxycarbide (H:SiOC) thin films. The method uses a plasma-enhanced chemical vapor deposition (PECVD) process to react oxygen- providing gas with cyclic silane compounds that have strained silicon bonds.

Chipmakers have used low-k insulating materials in recent years to reduce electrical interference between transistors, allowing them to be placed closer together. That resulted in smaller, faster, more power-efficient chips. But as semiconductor devices continue to shrink, conventional low-k films become more prone to damage from high processing temperatures, and begin to adhere poorly to the metal layers used for chip interconnections.

Dow Corning expects the new low-k process to be used to produce interlayer dielectrics in future generations of chips, starting with devices at the 32 nanometer node.

"This patent demonstrates the continuing advancement of our silicon technology, and our intent to protect our intellectual property," said Jeroen Bloemhard, global executive director for Dow Corning's Electronics and Advanced Technologies Industry. "We intend to remain significant players in the silicon materials industry, and are investing in research and development to help us satisfy the market's future needs."

Dow Corning's Advanced Technologies and Ventures Business serves the needs of the electronics, optoelectronics and semiconductor industries with specialized, high-purity silicone- and silicon-containing products and solutions. For more information, visit

About Dow Corning

Dow Corning Corporation ( is a globally integrated provider of materials, application technology and services, and is focused on providing innovative technologies that help its customers to invent the future. Dow Corning Corporation is equally owned by The Dow Chemical Company and Corning Incorporated . More than half of Dow Corning Corporation's sales are outside the United States.

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