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Proceedings Paper

Binary mask optimization for forward lithography based on boundary layer model in coherent systems
Author(s): Xu Ma; Gonzalo R. Arce
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Paper Abstract

Recently, a set of generalized gradient-based optical proximity correction (OPC) optimization methods have been developed to solve for the forward and inverse lithography problem under the thin-mask assumption, where the mask is considered a thin 2-D object. However, as the critical dimension printed on the wafer shrinks into the subwavelength regime, thick-mask effects become prevalent and thus these effects must be taken into account in OPC optimization methods. OPC methods derived under the thin-mask assumption have inherent limitations and perform poorly in the subwavelength scenario. This paper focuses on developing model-based forward binary mask optimization methods which account for the thick-mask effects of coherent imaging systems. The boundary layer (BL) model is exploited to simplify and characterize the thick-mask effects, leading to a computationally efficient OPC method. The BL model is simpler than other thick-mask models, treating the near field of the mask as the superposition of the interior transmission areas and the boundary layers. The advantages and limitations of the proposed algorithm are discussed and several illustrative simulations are presented.

Paper Details

Date Published: 3 March 2010
PDF: 21 pages
Proc. SPIE 7640, Optical Microlithography XXIII, 76402N (3 March 2010); doi: 10.1117/12.836858
Show Author Affiliations
Xu Ma, Univ. of Delaware (United States)
Gonzalo R. Arce, Univ. of Delaware (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 7640:
Optical Microlithography XXIII
Mircea V. Dusa; Will Conley, Editor(s)

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