Alternative photoresist platforms are being developed with the goal of meeting Resolution, Roughness and Sensitivity requirements for EUV lithography. Metal-based materials appear promising due to the high etch resistance, high absorption, and high resolution. However, the exposure mechanism of these materials is quite different from that of organic chemically amplified resists. The current electron-scattering model built into PROLITHTM X6.0 allows a direct comparison of the exposure mechanisms for different resist platforms: in particular, it is now possible to estimate the intrinsic resist uncertainty by evaluating electron, acid shot noise and spatial blurring, while forcing the photon shot noise contribution to zero. A comparison between organic resists and metal-based platforms reveals how the denser nature of the latter help containing the electron scattering in a much closer radius around the absorption event. The consequent electron-reaction (acid generation for photo-active-generator-containing organic materials, ligand dissociation for the metal-oxides) reflects the electron shot noise of the different platforms. The higher absorption combined with lower blur of the metaloxide materials seem to become of crucial importance for the 5 nm technology node and beyond.
Alessandro Vaglio Pret, Trey Graves, David Blankenship, and John J. Biafore, "Modeling and simulation of low-energy electron scattering in organic and inorganic EUV photoresists," Proc. SPIE 10146, Advances in Patterning Materials and Processes XXXIV, 1014609 (Presented at SPIE Advanced Lithography: February 28, 2017; Published: 27 March 2017); https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2261434.
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