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Proceedings Paper

Evaluation of TF11 attenuated-PSM mask blanks with DUV laser patterning
Author(s): Kezhao Xing; Charles Björnberg; Henrik Karlsson; Adisa Paulsson; Peter Beiming; Jukka Vedenpää; Jonathan Walford
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Paper Abstract

Tightening requirements on resolution, CD uniformity and positional accuracy push the development of improved photomask blanks. One such blank for 45nm node attenuated phase shift masks (att-PSM) provides a thinner chrome film, TF11, with a higher etch rate compared to previous generation NTAR5 att-PSM blanks from the same supplier. FEP-171, a positive chemically amplified resist, is commonly used in mask manufacturing for both e-beam and DUV laser pattern generators. TF11 chrome allows the FEP-171 resist thickness to be decreased at least down to 2000 Å while maintaining sufficient etch resistance, thereby improving photomask CD performance. The lower stress level in TF11 chrome films also reduces the image placement error induced by the material. In this study, TF11 chrome and FEP-171 resist are evaluated with exposures on a 248 nm DUV laser pattern generator, the Sigma7500. Patterning is first characterized for resist thicknesses of 2000 Å to 2600 Å in steps of 100 Å, assessing the minimum feature resolution, CD linearity, isolated-dense CD bias and dose sensitivity. Swing curve analysis shows a minimum near 2200 Å and a maximum near 2500 Å, corresponding closely to the reflectivity measurements provided by the blank supplier. The best overall patterning performance is obtained when operating near the swing maximum. The patterning performance is then studied in more detail with a resist thickness of 2550 Å that corresponds to the reflectivity maximum. This is compared to the results with 2000 Å resist, a standard thickness for e-beam exposures on TF11. The lithographic performance on NTAR5 att-PSM blanks with 3200 Å resist is also included for reference. This evaluation indicates that TF11 blanks with 2550 Å resist provide the best overall mask patterning performance obtained with the Sigma7500, showing a global CD uniformity below 4 nm (3s) and minimum feature resolution below 100 nm.

Paper Details

Date Published: 19 May 2008
PDF: 9 pages
Proc. SPIE 7028, Photomask and Next-Generation Lithography Mask Technology XV, 70281Z (19 May 2008); doi: 10.1117/12.793077
Show Author Affiliations
Kezhao Xing, Micronic Laser Systems AB (Sweden)
Charles Björnberg, Micronic Laser Systems AB (Sweden)
Henrik Karlsson, Micronic Laser Systems AB (Sweden)
Adisa Paulsson, Micronic Laser Systems AB (Sweden)
Peter Beiming, Micronic Laser Systems AB (Sweden)
Jukka Vedenpää, Micronic Laser Systems AB (Sweden)
Jonathan Walford, Micronic Laser Systems AB (Sweden)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 7028:
Photomask and Next-Generation Lithography Mask Technology XV
Toshiyuki Horiuchi, Editor(s)

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