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EUV vote-taking lithography: crazy... or not?
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Paper Abstract

Vote-taking lithography is a method for mitigating mask defects, which has been applied in the 1980’s to enhance yield. Vote-taking sums up N different mask images with identical content, each at 1/N dose, to mitigate the defects on each individual mask. The fundamental assumption is that the mask defects do not correlate in position from mask to mask, and so each individual defect will be blended with good images from the other N-1 masks. Vote-taking has recently been brought under the attention again for consideration in EUV lithography, where it might provide a temporary solution for situations in which the defectivity conditions are not yet meeting expectations.

This paper provides a thorough experimental assessment of the implementation of vote-taking, and discusses its pro’s and con’s. Based on N=4 vote-taking, we demonstrate the capability to mitigate different types of mask defects. Additionally, we found that blending different mask images brings clear benefit to the imaging, and provide experimental confirmation of improved local CDU and intra-field CDU, reduction of stochastic failures, improved overlay, ... Finally, we perform dedicated throughput calculations based on the qualification performance of ASML’s NXE:3400B scanner.

This work must be seen in the light of an open-minded search for options to optimally enable and implement EUV lithography. While defect-free masks and EUV pellicles are without argument essential for most of the applications, we investigate whether some applications could benefit from vote-taking.

Paper Details

Date Published: 19 March 2018
PDF: 17 pages
Proc. SPIE 10583, Extreme Ultraviolet (EUV) Lithography IX, 105830I (19 March 2018); doi: 10.1117/12.2299509
Show Author Affiliations
Joost Bekaert, IMEC (Belgium)
Peter De Bisschop, IMEC (Belgium)
Christophe Beral, IMEC (Belgium)
Eric Hendrickx, IMEC (Belgium)
Mark A. van de Kerkhof, ASML Netherlands B.V. (Netherlands)
Sander Bouten, ASML Netherlands B.V. (Netherlands)
Michiel Kupers, ASML Netherlands B.V. (Netherlands)
Guido Schiffelers, ASML Netherlands B.V. (Netherlands)
Erik Verduijn, GLOBALFOUNDRIES Inc. (United States)
Timothy A. Brunner, GLOBALFOUNDRIES Inc. (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 10583:
Extreme Ultraviolet (EUV) Lithography IX
Kenneth A. Goldberg, Editor(s)

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