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Proceedings Paper

Characterization of a 'thermal freeze' litho-litho-etch (LLE) process for predictive simulation
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Paper Abstract

In this work, a physical model is constructed to describe a thermal cure double patterning photoresist process. The basic lithographic response of each photoresist can be accurately described using the conventional chemically amplified resist modeling approach. Experimental data reveals that although the thermal cure process removes all detectable photosensitivity from the imaged first resist, it does increase the materials solubility in the second resist development process. It is theorized that this solubility change results from thermal de-protection of the resist polymer during the cure. Introduction of a first-order thermal de-protection process to the model, results in simulations that match the experimental data. Measurement of actinic optical properties show that the first resist remains optically stable during its processing (in the regions remaining on the wafer after development) but that the BARC material undergoes significant optical changes in open areas where the first resist has been removed. The calibrated process model is tested against experimental data generated under other optical conditions; good quantitative and qualitative agreement is observed and in one case the simulation results suggest a plausible mechanism for observed process failure.

Paper Details

Date Published: 22 March 2011
PDF: 11 pages
Proc. SPIE 7973, Optical Microlithography XXIV, 79730L (22 March 2011); doi: 10.1117/12.879508
Show Author Affiliations
Stewart A. Robertson, KLA-Tencor Corp. (United States)
Patrick Wong, IMEC (Belgium)
John J. Biafore, KLA-Tencor Corp. (United States)
Mark D. Smith, KLA-Tencor Corp. (United States)
Nadia Vandenbroeck, IMEC (Belgium)
Vincent Wiaux, IMEC (Belgium)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 7973:
Optical Microlithography XXIV
Mircea V. Dusa, Editor(s)

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