29 June 1998 Impacts of reticle and wafer elasticity control on overall alignment management strategy
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Abstract
Maintaining projection-aligners' stage grids-is critical for maximum overlay performance of production lithography. It seems that, particularly in the U.S., the industry has chosen the 'artifact-wafer' strategy as the standard technique to achieve this goal. This paper is intended to identify problems in overlay management using artifact wafers and to provide solutions to address the issues. One of the major sources that degrade accuracy in overlay management is the expansion/shrinkage of wafers and reticles. Both wafers and reticles expand during printing due to the heat delivered from the illumination source. The amount of the expansion tends to increase as the power of the illumination source increases per industry's demand on higher throughput. Wafers and reticles expand/shrink also due to environmental temperature change. The significance of wafer expansion/shrinkage in this mode has tended to be neglected. This is probably because, since it is measured and compensated by the 2nd print alignment, wafer scaling in the first print does not impact overlay performance evaluated at the shot center. Wafer expansion/shrinkage, however, does cause intra-shot scaling errors in overlay. And more importantly, since artifact wafers serve as absolute stage-grid-references, their expansion/shrinkage directly impact accuracy of overlay management. Reticle expansion/shrinkage due to temperature difference between where the reticles were created and where they are used along with reticle manufacturing errors causes inaccuracy in intra- shot performance evaluation. As product design rules continues to tighten, the intra-shot overlay performance can no longer be neglected. The impacts of reticle- and wafer-elasticity on total overlay management will be discussed. Multiple techniques to address the elasticity issues will be demonstrated. The discussion will conclude with recommendations for generation and usage of the artifact wafers.
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Etsuya Morita, Masaharu Kawakubo, Frank C. Leung, Sean J. McNamara, Joseph T. Parry, "Impacts of reticle and wafer elasticity control on overall alignment management strategy", Proc. SPIE 3334, Optical Microlithography XI, (29 June 1998); doi: 10.1117/12.310779; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.310779
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