Patent Number: 6,297,595

Title: Method and apparatus for generating a plasma

Abstract: A method and apparatus for generating a plasma by inductively coupling electromagnetic energy into the plasma. In one embodiment, first and second antenna coils are disposed about the circumference of the plasma containment area. The first and second antenna coils are relatively spaced along the longitudinal axis of the plasma containment area. A current is generated in the first and second antenna coils. A phase shift regulating network establishes a difference between the phase of the current in the first antenna and the phase of the current in the second antenna. The phase difference corresponds to the phase difference required to launch a helicon wave in the plasma. In a second embodiment, a chamber shield is made of a conductive material and is coupled to the RF source such that the shield functions as an RF antenna. The shield may be coupled in series to a coil surrounding the shield to increase the resultant flux density.

Inventors: Stimson; Bradley O. (San Jose, CA), Forster; John (San Francisco, CA)

Assignee: Applied Materials, Inc.

International Classification: H01J 37/32 (20060101); H01J 007/24 ()

Expiration Date: 10/02/2018