18 March 2016 Application of overlay modeling and control with Zernike polynomials in an HVM environment
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Abstract
Shrinking technology nodes and smaller process margins require improved photolithography overlay control. Generally, overlay measurement results are modeled with Cartesian polynomial functions for both intra-field and inter-field models and the model coefficients are sent to an advanced process control (APC) system operating in an XY Cartesian basis. Dampened overlay corrections, typically via exponentially or linearly weighted moving average in time, are then retrieved from the APC system to apply on the scanner in XY Cartesian form for subsequent lot exposure. The goal of the above method is to process lots with corrections that target the least possible overlay misregistration in steady state as well as in change point situations. In this study, we model overlay errors on product using Zernike polynomials with same fitting capability as the process of reference (POR) to represent the wafer-level terms, and use the standard Cartesian polynomials to represent the field-level terms. APC calculations for wafer-level correction are performed in Zernike basis while field-level calculations use standard XY Cartesian basis. Finally, weighted wafer-level correction terms are converted to XY Cartesian space in order to be applied on the scanner, along with field-level corrections, for future wafer exposures. Since Zernike polynomials have the property of being orthogonal in the unit disk we are able to reduce the amount of collinearity between terms and improve overlay stability. Our real time Zernike modeling and feedback evaluation was performed on a 20-lot dataset in a high volume manufacturing (HVM) environment. The measured on-product results were compared to POR and showed a 7% reduction in overlay variation including a 22% terms variation. This led to an on-product raw overlay Mean + 3Sigma X&Y improvement of 5% and resulted in 0.1% yield improvement.
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JaeWuk Ju, JaeWuk Ju, MinGyu Kim, MinGyu Kim, JuHan Lee, JuHan Lee, Jeremy Nabeth, Jeremy Nabeth, Sanghuck Jeon, Sanghuck Jeon, Hoyoung Heo, Hoyoung Heo, John C. Robinson, John C. Robinson, Bill Pierson, Bill Pierson, "Application of overlay modeling and control with Zernike polynomials in an HVM environment", Proc. SPIE 9778, Metrology, Inspection, and Process Control for Microlithography XXX, 977825 (18 March 2016); doi: 10.1117/12.2219739; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2219739
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