22 March 2007 Mechanism of post develop stain defect and resist surface condition
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In regards to stains appearing on the resist pattern after developing, this study succeeded in the reduction of these stain defects by improving the develop process. Furthermore the mechanism of this stain defect was considered by analyzing components of the defect. Since the stain defects of former generation such as i-line or KrF resist defect are known well, even now this defect is seen on the ArF resist. The appearance of this stain defect was caused by a kind of resist or pattern. Until now this defect has been resolved by improving the resist. In this study however, we tried to resolve the stain defect by the improvement of the developing process. As this improvement was able to greatly reduce this defect with no change to the resist or pattern, it was understood this defect is much influenced by the developing process. Thus it is projected the resist surface condition during the develop process was the important key to decreasing this defect. It should be understood the number of defects was changed by the kind of resist or pattern. First we analyzed the components of the stain defect itself. Next we analyzed the change in resist surface condition by the new develop process. As a result, it was realized this stain defect was from the developer chemical, it was considered that the developer remaining on the resist film caused the stain defect. As the resist surface condition was changed by the improved develop process, resulting in a sharp decrease in the stain defect.
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Masahiko Harumoto, Akira Yamaguchi, Akihiro Hisai, "Mechanism of post develop stain defect and resist surface condition", Proc. SPIE 6519, Advances in Resist Materials and Processing Technology XXIV, 65193F (22 March 2007); doi: 10.1117/12.711063; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.711063

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