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ANTI-REFLECTION ETCHING OF SILICON SURFACES CATALYZED WITH IONIC METAL SOLUTIONS

United States Patent Application

20090236317
A1
View the Complete Application at the US Patent & Trademark Office
National Renewable Energy Laboratory - Visit the NREL Technology Transfer Website
Black Silicon Etching
A method (300) for etching a silicon surface (116). The method (300) includes positioning (310) a substrate (112) with a silicon surface (116) into a vessel (122). The vessel (122) is filled (330, 340) with a volume of an etching solution (124) so as to cover the silicon surface (116). The etching solution (124) includes a catalytic solution (140) and an oxidant-etchant solution (146), e.g., an aqueous solution of hydrofluoric acid and hydrogen peroxide. The catalytic solution (140) may be a solution that provides metal-containing molecules or ionic species of catalytic metals. The silicon surface (116) is etched (350) by agitating the etching solution (124) in the vessel (122) such as with ultrasonic agitation, and the etching may include heating (360) the etching solution (124) and directing light (365) onto the silicon surface (116). During the etching, the catalytic solution (140), such as a dilute solution of chorauric acid, in the presence of the oxidant-etchant solution (146) may release metal particles such as gold or silver nanoparticles that speed or drive the etching process.
YOST, VERNON (LAKEWOOD, CO), BRANZ, HOWARD (BOULDER, CO)
MIDWEST RESEARCH INSTITUTE (KANSAS CITY MO)
12/ 053,445
March 21, 2008
CONTRACTUAL ORIGIN [0002] The United States Government has rights in this invention under Contract No. DE-AC36-99GO10337 between the United States Department of Energy and the National Renewable Energy Laboratory, a Division of the Midwest Research Institute.