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Optical lithography using deep ultraviolet (DUV) light with a wavelength of 193 nm, together with immersion technology, is extendable down to the 45-nm node. However, using this technology to achieve half-pitch resolutions of 32 nm and below for future generations of even denser devices would require double exposure or double-imaging techniques that would halve wafer production throughput while markedly increasing mask set prices.
Extreme ultraviolet lithography (EUVL), with a wavelength of 13.5 nm, is today considered the most viable solution to replace optical lithography for high-volume chip manufacturing at the 32-nm node and below.
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