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Proceedings Paper

Top coat or no top coat for immersion lithography?
Author(s): N. Stepanenko; Hyun-Woo Kim; S. Kishimura; D. Van Den Heuvel; N. Vandenbroeck; M. Kocsis; P. Foubert; M. Maenhoudt; M. Ercken; F. Van Roey; R. Gronheid; I. Pollentier; D. Vangoidsenhoven; C. Delvaux; C. Baerts; S. O'Brien; W. Fyen; G. Wells
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Paper Abstract

Since the moment immersion lithography appeared in the roadmaps of IC manufacturers, the question whether to use top coats has become one of the important topics for discussions. The top coats used in immersion lithography have proved to serve as good protectors from leaching of the resist components (PAGs, bases) into the water. However their application complicates the process and may lead to two side effects. First, top coats can affect the process window and resist profile depending on the material's refractive index, thickness, acidity, chemical interaction with the resist and the soaking time. Second, the top coat application may increase the total amount of defects on the wafer. Having an immersion resist which could work without the top coat would be a preferable solution. Still, it is quite challenging to make such a resist as direct water/resist interaction may also result in process window changes, CD variations, generation of additional defects. We have performed a systematic evaluation of a large number of immersion resist and top coat combinations, using the ASML XT:1250Di scanner at IMEC. The samples for the experiments were provided by all the leading resist and top coat suppliers. Particular attention was paid to how the resist and top coat materials from different vendors interacted with each other. Among the factors which could influence the total amount of defects or CD variations on the wafer were: the material's dynamic contact angle and its interaction with the scanner stage speed, top coat thickness and intermixing layer formation, water uptake and leaching. We have examined the importance of all mentioned factors, using such analytical techniques as Resist Development Analyser (RDA), Quartz Crystal Microbalance (QCM), Mass Spectroscopy (MS) and scatterometry. We have also evaluated the influence of the pre- and pos- exposure rinse processes on the defectivity. In this paper we will present the data on imaging and defectivity performance of the resists with and without the use of top coats. So far we can conclude that top coat/resist approach used in immersion lithography needs some more improvements (i.e. process, materials properties) in order to be implemented in high volume manufacturing.

Paper Details

Date Published: 29 March 2006
PDF: 17 pages
Proc. SPIE 6153, Advances in Resist Technology and Processing XXIII, 615304 (29 March 2006); doi: 10.1117/12.660158
Show Author Affiliations
N. Stepanenko, IMEC (Belgium)
Infineon Technologies SC300 GmbH & Co. (Germany)
Hyun-Woo Kim, IMEC (Belgium)
Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd. (South Korea)
S. Kishimura, IMEC (Belgium)
Matsushita Electric Industrial Co., Ltd. (Japan)
D. Van Den Heuvel, IMEC (Belgium)
N. Vandenbroeck, IMEC (Belgium)
M. Kocsis, IMEC (Belgium)
Intel Corp. (United States)
P. Foubert, IMEC (Belgium)
M. Maenhoudt, IMEC (Belgium)
M. Ercken, IMEC (Belgium)
F. Van Roey, IMEC (Belgium)
R. Gronheid, IMEC (Belgium)
I. Pollentier, IMEC (Belgium)
D. Vangoidsenhoven, IMEC (Belgium)
C. Delvaux, IMEC (Belgium)
C. Baerts, IMEC (Belgium)
S. O'Brien, Texas Instruments (United States)
W. Fyen, IMEC (Belgium)
G. Wells, IMEC (Belgium)
Texas Instruments (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 6153:
Advances in Resist Technology and Processing XXIII
Qinghuang Lin, Editor(s)

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