A method is used to investigate carbon removal pathways during metal film growth using organometallic precursors. The approach combines a time-of-flight mass spectrometer with a growth chamber from which substrates can be removed during real-time film growth. Consequently, evolving mass spectral signatures can be correlated with changing film properties. Although more general as a technique, results are presented for the photoassisted growth of Pt from CH3CpPt(CH3)3 in a D2 atmosphere. Here, a marked increase in deuterium/hydrogen exchange is clearly correlated with an increase in the Pt:C ratio for the metal films, as determined by x-ray photoelectron spectroscopy. However, results for growth with CH3CH2CpPt(CH3)3 as well as (CH3)3CCpPt(CH3)3 suggest that while extensive DH exchange can be a feature of the growth process, it is not a prerequisite for producing films with relatively high Pt:C ratios.

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A similar increase in the Pt:C ratio for XPS spectra taken in the case of the ethyl-CpPt precursor was also observed but is not shown here.

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