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Equivalent Oxide Thickness (EOT)
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Not to be confused with Oxide Thickness (tOX).

Equivalent Oxide Thickness (EOT), represented by teq or tOX, is the gate oxide thickness of the SiO2 layer of a transistor that would be required to achieve similar capacitance density as the high-κ material used.

A gate dielectric with a dielectric constant that is substantially higher than that of SiO2 will initially have a much smaller equivalent electrical thickness. This key feature allowed for the industry to continue on with Moore's Law. As the semiconductor industry began to experiment with transitioning from a SiO2 gate oxide to a high-κ material, EOT can be used to quickly compare those materials using existing SiO2-based models.

Equation[edit]

One can treat MOSFET behavior like two parallel plate capacitors,

Equation upper C Subscript o x Baseline equals StartFraction upper A epsilon Subscript r Baseline epsilon 0 Over t Subscript o x Baseline EndFraction

Where Equation upper A epsilon Subscript r is the relative dielectric constant of SiO2 in our case. Therefore one calculate the equivalent oxide thickness as,

Equation StartFraction upper A epsilon Subscript upper S i upper O Baseline 2 Baseline epsilon 0 Over t Subscript o x Baseline EndFraction equals StartFraction upper A epsilon Subscript h i g h minus kappa Baseline epsilon 0 Over t Subscript o x minus h i g h minus kappa Baseline EndFraction
Equation t Subscript o x minus h i g h minus kappa Baseline equals StartFraction CrossOut upper A EndCrossOut epsilon Subscript h i g h minus kappa Baseline CrossOut epsilon 0 EndCrossOut Over CrossOut upper A EndCrossOut epsilon Subscript upper S i upper O Baseline 2 Baseline CrossOut epsilon 0 EndCrossOut EndFraction t Subscript o x Baseline equals StartFraction epsilon Subscript h i g h minus kappa Baseline Over epsilon Subscript upper S i upper O Baseline 2 Baseline EndFraction t Subscript o x

Note that the dielectric constant SiO2 is 3.9

Equation t Subscript o x minus h i g h minus kappa Baseline equals StartFraction epsilon Subscript h i g h minus kappa Baseline Over 3.9 EndFraction t Subscript o x

Where toxe is the equivalent oxide thickness, εhigh-κ is the dielectric constant of the high-κ material used, and tox is the physical oxide layer thickness.

Example[edit]

For example, consider Hafnium Dioxide (HfO2) which has an Equation epsilon Subscript r Baseline equals 24 (subject to variations in temperature). A layer of just 6.15 nm in thickness Hafnium Dioxide (HfO2) would result in an equivalent SiO2 oxide thickness of around Equation t Subscript o x Baseline equals StartFraction 3.9 Over 24 EndFraction 6.15 nm equals 1 nm . This is indeed the material used by Intel following their transition to high-κ at the 45 nm process node.