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Proceedings Paper

Process optimization for particle removal on blank chrome mask plates in preparation for resist application
Author(s): Stephen Osborne; Eryn Smith; Eric Woster; Anthony Pelayo
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Paper Abstract

As integrated circuits require smaller lines to provide the memory and processing capability for tomorrow's marketplace, the photomask industry is adopting higher contrast resists to improve photomask lithography. Photomask yield for several high-contrast resist recipes may be improved by coating masks at the mask shop. When coating at a mask shop, an effective method is available that uses coat/bake cluster tools to ensure blanks are clean prior to coating. Many high-contrast resists are available, and some are more susceptible to time-dependent performance factors than conventional resists. One of these factors is the time between coating and writing. Although future methods may reduce the impact of this factor, one current trend is to reduce this time by coating plates at the mask shop just prior to writing. Establishing an effective process to clean blanks prior to coating is necessary for product quality control and is a new task that is critical for maskmakers who previously purchased mask plates but have decided to begin coating them within their facility. This paper provides a strategy and method to be used within coat/bake cluster tools to remove particle contamination from mask blanks. The process uses excimer-UV ionizing radiation and ozone to remove organic contaminants, and then uses a wet process combined with megasonic agitation, surfactant, and spin forces. Megasonic agitation with surfactant lifts up particles, while the convective outflow of water enhances centripetal shear without accumulating harmful charge.

Paper Details

Date Published: 11 March 2002
PDF: 12 pages
Proc. SPIE 4562, 21st Annual BACUS Symposium on Photomask Technology, (11 March 2002); doi: 10.1117/12.458347
Show Author Affiliations
Stephen Osborne, Etec Systems, Inc. (United States)
Eryn Smith, Metron Technology, Inc. (United States)
Eric Woster, Metron Technology, Inc. (United States)
Anthony Pelayo, Metron Technology, Inc. (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 4562:
21st Annual BACUS Symposium on Photomask Technology
Giang T. Dao; Brian J. Grenon, Editor(s)

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