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Proceedings Paper

Exploring the resolution limits of phase-shift mask lithography with a very high numerical aperture ArF step-and-scan system
Author(s): Harry Sewell; Pankaj Raval; Diane C. McCafferty
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Paper Abstract

This paper studies the resolution limits of optical lithography using phase-shift mask technology. Alternating phase-shift masks are studied in the context of the 70nm lithographic node. The performance of alternating phase-shift masks is measured at the limits of its resolution. Printing issues that result from phase errors on the reticle are observed. These phase errors result in a loss of depth of focus and ultimate resolution. A lithography-system-based solution to the mask phase errors is proposed. A small obscuration aperture that matches the partial coherence of the illumination is placed in the pupil plane of optics to block the zero-order light leakage that results from the phase error. This paper reports the performance and effects of using this obscuration aperture.

Paper Details

Date Published: 16 July 2002
PDF: 12 pages
Proc. SPIE 4689, Metrology, Inspection, and Process Control for Microlithography XVI, (16 July 2002); doi: 10.1117/12.473481
Show Author Affiliations
Harry Sewell, ASML (United States)
Pankaj Raval, ASML (United States)
Diane C. McCafferty, ASML (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 4689:
Metrology, Inspection, and Process Control for Microlithography XVI
Daniel J. C. Herr, Editor(s)

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