Crystalline Defects in Silicon Wafer


November 12, 2020

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Naturally, crystals have imperfections. These imperfections are called crystalline defects. Particular types of crystalline defects are essential in silicon manufacturing. However, some of these defects can weaken a wafer and cause various reactions in the different stages of silicon manufacturing. It's critical to be aware of the different types of crystal defects since these defects can significantly impact the wafers' quality and performance. Here are the various crystalline defects:

What is Silicon Manufacturing?

What are the Different Crystalline Defects in Silicon?

Crystal Point Defects

Crystal point defects play an essential role in the kinetics of diffusion and oxidation. They dictate the rate at which the distribution of dopants happens and how silicon is oxidized.There are various forms of crystal point defects:

  • Vacancy Defect- when a silicon atom is missing.
  • Interstitial Defect- when an atom is situated in a non-lattice area within the crystal.
  • Self-interstitial Defect- when a silicon atom is situated in an interstitial location within the crystal.
  • Intrinsic Point Defect- Vacancies and self-interstitial are identified as intrinsic point defects.
  • Extrinsic Point Defect- when a non-silicon atom invades a non-lattice site.


Dislocations interrupt diffusion profiles and sink metallic impurities in silicon manufacturing. That's why they're unwanted in silicon wafers. But their ability to decrease contaminants can be manipulated so it can work as an advantage. This ability can be used to remove contaminants from the wafer.There are different forms of dislocations:

  • Edge Dislocation- It is when a part of the lattice contains extra atoms, and the rest of the lattice contains the right number of atoms.
  • Screw Dislocation- It is when the displacement of atoms in a plane in the crystal forms a ramp. The screw creates a barrier between the atoms that slipped and those that stayed in place in the crystal.

Area Defects

Area defects can result in device deterioration. Furthermore, they refer to the interruption in the regularity of the piling of planes of atoms in a crystal lattice.

What is Silicon Manufacturing?

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It's essential to be aware of the different silicon crystal defects because they affect the different silicon manufacturing stages. At Wafer World, we make sure that our crystals are and wafers defect-free. Contact us for inquires!