We employ the phase-field method to assess electromigration (EM) damage in wide polycrystalline interconnects due to grain-boundary grooving. An interplay of surface and grain-boundary diffusion is shown to drastically influence the mode of progressive EM damage. Rapid atomic transport along the surface leads to shape-preserving surface drift reminiscent of Blech drift-velocity experiments. On the other hand, a comparatively faster grain-boundary transport localizes the damage, resulting in the proliferation of intergranular slits with a shape-preserving tip. At steady state, the two regimes exhibit exponents of 1 and 3/2, respectively, in Black's law. While surface drift obeys an inverse scaling with grain size, slits exhibit a direct relationship at small sizes, with the dependence becoming weaker at larger ones. Furthermore, we explain the influence of curvature- or EM-mediated healing fluxes running along the surface on groove replenishment. Insights derived from phase-field simulations of EM in bicrystals are extended to investigate the multiphysics of mixed-mode damage of a polycrystalline interconnect line that is characterized by a drift of small grain surfaces, slit propagation, and coarsening. The triple and quadruple junctions are identified as prominent sites of failure.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Physics and Astronomy(all)