Extreme ultraviolet lithography (EUVL, λ = 13.5 nm) being the most likely candidate to manufacture electronic devices for future technology nodes is to be introduced in high volume manufacturing (HVM) at the 7 nm logic node, at least at critical lithography levels. With this impending introduction, it is clear that excellent resist performance at ultra-high printing resolutions (below 20 nm line/space L/S) is ever more pressing. Nonetheless, EUVL has faced many technical challenges towards this paradigm shift to a new lithography wavelength platform. Since the inception of chemically amplified resists (CARs) they have been the base upon which state-of-the art photoresist technology has been developed from. Resist performance as measured in terms of printing resolution (R), line edge roughness (LER), sensitivity (D or exposure dose) and exposure latitude (EL) needs to be improved but there are well known trade-off relationships (LRS trade-off) among these parameters for CARs that hamper their simultaneous enhancement. Here, we present some of the most promising EUVL materials tested by EUV interference lithography (EUV-IL) with the aim of resolving features down to 11 nm half-pitch (HP), while focusing on resist performance at 16 and 13 nm HP as needed for the 7 and 5 nm node, respectively. EUV-IL has enabled the characterization and development of new resist materials before commercial EUV exposure tools become available and is therefore a powerful research and development tool. With EUV-IL, highresolution periodic images can be printed by the interference of two or more spatially coherent beams through a transmission-diffraction grating mask. For this reason, our experiments have been performed by EUV-IL at Swiss Light Source (SLS) synchrotron facility located at the Paul Scherrer Institute (PSI). Having the opportunity to test hundreds of EUVL materials from vendors and research partners from all over the world, PSI is able to give a global update on some of the most promising materials tested.
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