Used by the semiconductor industry primarily for in-situ chamber cleaning of CVD/PECVD tools. Typical conversion rates in plasma have been around 32% utilisation; however, recent development work has suggested that higher utilisation levels are possible.
Abatement technology is introduced to treat the off-gas stream. Besides direct emission reduction efforts, other technologies are being pursued like optimisation and replacement by other, not-in-kind gases (like NF3 – having a “PFC-like” global warming potential of 10800 (ITH 100a, WMO 1998), but offering the potential for utilisation levels around 85%).
Estimated European sales to semiconductor manufacturing companies <175t for 1997. Compared with an emission rate of max. 70%, the CO2 equivalent emissions are estimated as <1,4 Mt.