The majority of scatterometric production control models assume constant optical properties of the materials and only dimensional parameters are allowed to vary. However, this assumption, especially in case of thin-metal films, negatively impacts model precision and accuracy. In this work we focus on optical modeling of the TiN metal hardmask for scatterometry applications. Since the dielectric function of TiN exhibits thickness dependence, we had to take this fact into account. Moreover, presence of the highly absorbing films influences extracted thicknesses of dielectric layers underneath the metal films. The later phenomenon is often not reflected by goodness of fit. We show that accurate optical modeling of metal is essential to achieve desired scatterometric model quality for automatic process control in microelectronic production. Presented modeling methodology can be applied to other TiN applications such as diffusion barriers and metal gates as well as for other metals used in microelectronic manufacturing for all technology nodes.
Peter Ebersbach, Adam M. Urbanowicz, Dmitriy Likhachev, and Carsten Hartig, "Advanced optical modeling of TiN metal hard mask for scatterometric critical dimension metrology," Proc. SPIE 10145, Metrology, Inspection, and Process Control for Microlithography XXXI, 101451G (Presented at SPIE Advanced Lithography: March 02, 2017; Published: 28 March 2017); https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2258659.
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