Metal containing resists (MCR) are one of the candidates for Extreme Ultraviolet (EUV) resists aiming to achieve the resolution, linewidth roughness and sensitivity (RLS) requirements of advanced design nodes. MCRs intrinsically have high etch resistance owing to their metal content. Therefore, low resist thickness (~18nm) is sufficient to transfer resist patterns into an underlying hard mask. Also, the thin resist reduces susceptibility to pattern collapse during development because of low aspect ratio. However, thus far little attention has been paid to optical metrology and inspectability (overlay, defect inspection, scatterometry, etc.) of these resists, which is another critical requirement to move MCR toward high volume manufacturing (HVM). <p> </p>In this paper, we investigate overlay metrology and overlay correction with MCR. Even though the optical contrast for MCR is slightly lower than for chemically amplified resist (CAR) it seemed sufficient for high-quality overlay metrology. However, the measurement precision for MCR is deteriorated compared to that for CAR, resulting in significantly higher residuals. The root cause of the deteriorated measurement precision was found in grains in the optical image after MCR development. Interestingly, the after etch performance of CAR and MCR is identical. We demonstrate that with sufficient sampling, appropriate correctables can be extracted from the MCR overlay results. Finally, we discuss how the increased image noise can be compensated by the applied sampling scheme.
As feature size shrinkage in semiconductor device progress, process fluctuation, especially focus strongly affects device performance. Because focus control is an ongoing challenge in optical lithography, various studies have sought for improving focus monitoring and control. Focus errors are due to wafers, exposure tools, reticles, QCs, and so on. Few studies are performed to minimize the measurement errors of auto focus (AF) sensors of exposure tool, especially when processed wafers are exposed. With current focus measurement techniques, the phase shift grating (PSG) focus monitor 1) has been already proposed and its basic principle is that the intensity of the diffraction light of the mask pattern is made asymmetric by arranging a π/2 phase shift area on a reticle. The resist pattern exposed at the defocus position is shifted on the wafer and shifted pattern can be easily measured using an overlay inspection tool. However, it is difficult to measure shifted pattern for the pattern on the processed wafer because of interruptions caused by other patterns in the underlayer. In this paper, we therefore propose "SEM-PSG" technique, where the shift of the PSG resist mark is measured by employing critical dimension-scanning electron microscope (CD-SEM) to measure the focus error on the processed wafer. First, we evaluate the accuracy of SEM-PSG technique. Second, by applying the SEM-PSG technique and feeding the results back to the exposure, we evaluate the focus accuracy on processed wafers. By applying SEM-PSG feedback, the focus accuracy on the processed wafer was improved from 40 to 29 nm in 3σ.