18 March 2009 High-resolution defect inspection of step-and-flash imprint lithography for 32-nm half-pitch patterning
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Abstract
Step and Flash Imprint involves the field-by-field deposition and exposure of a low viscosity resist deposited by jetting technology onto the substrate. The patterned mask is lowered into the fluid which then quickly flows into the relief patterns in the mask by capillary action. Following this filling step, the resist is crosslinked under UV radiation, and then the mask is removed leaving a patterned solid on the substrate. Compatibility with existing CMOS processes requires a mask infrastructure in which resolution, inspection and repair are all addressed. The purpose of this paper is to understand the limitations of inspection at half pitches of 32 nm and below. A 32 nm programmed defect mask was fabricated. Patterns included in the mask consisted of an SRAM Metal 1 cell, dense lines, and dense arrays of pillars. Programmed defect sizes started at 4 nm and increased to 48 nm in increments of 4 nm. Defects in both the mask and imprinted wafers were characterized scanning electron microscopy and the measured defect areas were calculated. These defects were then inspected using KLA-T eS35 and NGR2100 electron beam wafer inspection systems. Defect sizes as small as 8 nm were detected, and detection limits were found to be a function of defect type.
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Kosta Selinidis, Kosta Selinidis, Ecron Thompson, Ecron Thompson, Ian McMackin, Ian McMackin, S.V. Sreenivasan, S.V. Sreenivasan, Douglas J. Resnick, Douglas J. Resnick, "High-resolution defect inspection of step-and-flash imprint lithography for 32-nm half-pitch patterning", Proc. SPIE 7271, Alternative Lithographic Technologies, 72711W (18 March 2009); doi: 10.1117/12.815014; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.815014
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