Carbon coverage, oxidation and reduction of Au, Pt, Pd, Rh, Cu, Ru, Ni and Co layers of 1.5 nm thickness on Mo have been characterized with ARPES and desorption spectroscopy upon exposure to thermal H and O radicals. We observe that only part of the carbon species is chemically eroded by atomic H exposure, yielding hydrocarbon desorption. Exposure to atomic O yields complete carbon erosion and CO2 and H2O desorption. A dramatic increase in metallic and non-metallic oxide is observed for especially Ni and Co surfaces, while for Au and Cu, the sub-surface Mo layer is much more oxidized. Although volatile oxides exist for some of the d-metals, there is no indication of d-metal erosion. Subsequent atomic H exposure reduces the clean oxides to a metallic state under desorption of H2O. Due to its adequacy, we propose the atomic oxygen and subsequent atomic hydrogen sequence as a candidate for contamination removal in practical applications like photolithography at 13.5 nm radiation.
- Chemical erosion