Tribo-oxidation of metals plays important roles in electro-chemical-mechanical planarization (ECMP). Using an electrochemical-tribological technique, we conducted investigation of tantalum tribo-oxidation during ECMP. Adding an electrochemical system to a tribometer, we were able to monitor surface changes through friction. We were able to generate tantalum oxides with assistance of friction. It was found that meta-stable suboxides of tantalum formed. The mechanisms of tribo-oxidation are experimentally studied and discussed here.

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