According to the ITRS  photo mask is a significant challenge for the 22nm technology node requirements and beyond.
Mask making capability and cost escalation continue to be critical for future lithography progress. On the technological
side mask specifications and complexity have increased more quickly than the half-pitch requirements on the wafer
designated by the roadmap due to advanced optical proximity correction and double patterning demands. From the
economical perspective mask costs have significantly increased each generation, in which mask writing represents a
major portion. The availability of a multi-electron-beam lithography system for mask write application is considered a
potential solution to overcome these challenges [2, 3].
In this paper an update of the development status of a full-package high-throughput multi electron-beam writer, called
Multi Shaped Beam (MSB), will be presented. Lithography performance results, which are most relevant for mask
writing applications, will be disclosed. The MSB technology is an evolutionary development of the matured single
Variable Shaped Beam (VSB) technology. An arrangement of Multi Deflection Arrays (MDA) allows operation with
multiple shaped beams of variable size, which can be deflected and controlled individually .
This evolutionary MSB approach is associated with a lower level of risk and a relatively short time to implementation
compared to the known revolutionary concepts [3, 5, 6].
Lithography performance is demonstrated through exposed pattern. Further details of the substrate positioning platform
performance will be disclosed. It will become apparent that the MSB operational mode enables lithography on the same
and higher performance level compared to single VSB and that there are no specific additional lithography challenges
existing beside those which have already been addressed .