Directed self-assembly (DSA) of block copolymers (BCPs) has been expected to become one of the most promising next generation lithography candidates for sub-15 nm line patterning and sub-20 nm contact hole patterning. In order to provide the DSA lithography to practical use in advanced semiconductor device manufacturing, defect mitigation in the DSA materials and processes is the primary challenge. We need to clarify the defect generation mechanism using in-situ measurement of self-assembling processes of BCPs in cooperation with modeling approaches to attain the DSA defect mitigation.
In this work, we thus employed in-situ atomic force microscope (AFM) and grazing-incidence small angle X-ray scattering (GI-SAXS) and investigated development of surface morphology as well as internal structure during annealing processes.
Figure 1 shows series of the AFM images of PMAPOSS-b-PTFEMA films during annealing processes. The images clearly show that vitrified sponge-like structure without long-range order in as-spun film transforms into lamellar structure and that the long range order of the lamellar structure increases with annealing temperature. It is well-known that ordering processes of BCPs from disordered state in bulk progress via nucleation and growth. In contrary to the case of bulk, the observed processes seem to be spinodal decomposition. This is because the structure in as-spun film is not the concentration fluctuation of disordered state but the vitrified sponge-like structure. The annealing processes induce order-order transition from non-equilibrium ordered-state to the lamellar structure. The surface tension assists the transition and directs the orientation.
Figure 2 shows scattering patterns of (a) vicinity of film top and (b) whole sample of the GI-SAXS. We can find vertically oriented lamellar structure in the vicinity of film top while horizontally oriented lamellar structures in the vicinity of film bottom, indicating that the GI-SAXS measurement can clarify the variation of the morphologies in depth direction and that the surface tension affects the orientation of the lamellar structure. Finally a combination of the time development data in the in-situ AFM and the GI-SAXS is used to develop a kinetic modeling for prediction of dynamical change in three-dimensional nano-structures.
A part of this work was funded by the New Energy and Industrial Technology Development Organization (NEDO) in Japan under the EIDEC project.
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