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Proceedings Paper

Current status of x-ray mask manufacturing at the Microlithographic Mask Development Center
Author(s): Kurt R. Kimmel; Patrick J. Hughes
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Paper Abstract

The Microlithographic Mask Development Center (MMD) has been the focal point of X-ray mask development efforts in the United States since its inception in 1993. Funded by the Advanced Research Projects Agency (ARPA), and with technical support from the Proximity X-ray Lithography Association (AT&T, IBM, Loral Federal Systems, and Motorola) the MMD has recently made dramatic advances in mask fabrication. Numerous defect-free 64Mb and 256Mb DRAM masks have been made on both boron-doped silicon and silicon carbide substrates. Image-placement error of less than 35nm 3 sigma is achieved with high yield. Image-size (critical dimension) control of 25nm 3 sigma on 250nm nominal images is representative performance. This progress is being made in a manufacturing environment with significant volumes, multiple customers, multiple substrate configurations, and fast turnaround-time (TAT) requirements. The MMD state-of-the-art equipment infrastructure has made much of this progress possible. This year the MMD qualified the EL-4, an IBM-designed-and-built variable-shaped-spot e-beam system. The fundamental performance parameters of this system will be described. Operational techniques of multiple partial exposure writing and product specific emulation (PSE) have been implemented to improve image-placement accuracy with remarkable success. Image-size control was studied in detail with contributory components separated. Defect density was systematically reduced to yield defect-free masks while simultaneously tightening inspection criteria. Information about these and other recent engineering highlights will be reported. An outline of the primary engineering challenges and goals for 1996 and status of progress toward 100 nm design rule capability will also be given.

Paper Details

Date Published: 24 July 1996
PDF: 12 pages
Proc. SPIE 2793, Photomask and X-Ray Mask Technology III, (24 July 1996); doi: 10.1117/12.245250
Show Author Affiliations
Kurt R. Kimmel, IBM Microelectronics Div. (United States)
Patrick J. Hughes, IBM Microelectronics Div. (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 2793:
Photomask and X-Ray Mask Technology III
Hideo Yoshihara, Editor(s)

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