ALD 2020 Innovator Awardee
The ALD Innovator award “For Original Work and Leadership in ALD” will be presented on Monday prior to the Plenary Lectures.
University of Helsinki, Finland
Biography: Mikko Ritala (born 1968 in Nokia, Finland) is a professor of inorganic materials chemistry at University of Helsinki. He received his M.Sc. degree in 1991 from University of Turku, and Ph.D. degree in 1994 from University of Helsinki, both in inorganic chemistry. During 1995 – 2003 he worked at University of Helsinki, first as a postdoctoral researcher and then as an academy research fellow, both posts granted by Academy of Finland. In 2003 he was nominated to his current position.
After starting in 1991, Mikko Ritala has spent nearly 30 years in ALD research. His main research topic in ALD is development of new processes and precursors for thin films for microelectronics and other applications. Real time reaction mechanism studies form an important part of this research. Another research area is preparation of nanostructured materials by for example templating with ALD and electrodeposition, and electrospinning and electroblowing of nanofibres. Mikko Ritala has supervised 30 PhDs, published 500 papers (h-index = 70) and holds several key patents. In 2007 he was nominated as ISI Highly Cited Author in the field of materials science, and in 2010 he received Alfred Kordelin Foundation award. He has given numerous invited talks in international conferences. He started the American Vacuum Society’s short course on Atomic Layer Deposition and has given tutorials on the same topic also in other occasions. Mikko Ritala has participated in organization of numerous international conferences, including the AVS ALD conference series from its very beginning. He chaired the ALD 2004 meeting in Helsinki that combined the AVS-ALD and Baltic ALD (BALD) conferences, and he is prepared to repeat the same in 2024.
Abstract: Innovations in ALD Chemistry Open Doors to Applications
The success of ALD is built on chemistry. Whenever one wants to exploit the unique benefits of ALD with a new thin film material, proper precursors fulfilling the ALD criteria must be found for that material. Often new chemistry needs to be developed for also those materials that have already earlier been deposited by ALD because the existing processes are not compatible with the new application. The connection works also the other way: once a new material is added to the ALD portfolio, it may be exploited in also applications other than that originally developed for. This talk will make an overview of development of ALD chemistry from the past to the future. Through selected examples it will be shown how innovations in precursor chemistry have been made and how they have enabled to start to explore and exploit ALD in new applications. Challenges and opportunities ahead for the ALD chemistry development and research will also be discussed.
ALD processes consist of two or more precursors. Accordingly, breakthroughs have been made through metal precursors, non-metal precursors, and the ways how these are combined. Examples of all three will be given. While finding and testing precursors that deposit the desired film is the first, most important and experimentally relatively straightforward step in ALD chemistry research, the following steps toward comprehensive understanding on how the chemistry actually works are much more challenging and rarely fully complete. Examples of successful reaction mechanism studies with quartz crystal microbalance and quadrupole mass spectrometer under representative process conditions will be presented along the talk.