15 December 2016 Contour metrology using critical dimension atomic force microscopy
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The critical dimension atomic force microscopy (CD-AFM) has been proposed as an instrument for contour measurement and verification since its capabilities are complementary to the widely used scanning electron microscopy (SEM). Although data from CD-AFM are three dimensional (3-D) in structure, the planar two-dimensional data required for contour metrology are not easily extracted from CD-AFM data. This is largely due to the limitations of the CD-AFM method for controlling the tip position and scanning, in which the relevant sidewall data are only obtained in one lateral axis. To use CD-AFM for contour metrology, the extracted profiles must include actual sidewall data from both lateral axes. Using two images acquired from orthogonal scan directions, profile extraction, and a method to combine those profiles, a technique for obtaining contours with the CD-AFM is developed. The main sources of error for this technique are described. The contours derived from CD-AFM were compared with those obtained using the SEM. Our results show that CD-AFM has the potential to make important contributions to semiconductor contour metrology.
Ndubuisi G. Orji, Ronald G. Dixson, Boon Ping Ng, András E. Vladár, Michael T. Postek, "Contour metrology using critical dimension atomic force microscopy," Journal of Micro/Nanolithography, MEMS, and MOEMS 15(4), 044006 (15 December 2016). https://doi.org/10.1117/1.JMM.15.4.044006 . Submission:

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