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Proceedings Paper

Nanoemitter: ultra-high-resolution electron source for CD metrology
Author(s): Sebastian W. Schmidt; Christian Penzkofer; Bernd Irmer
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Paper Abstract

Nanoemitters (NEs) are a promising replacement for electron sources in producing field emission CD-SEMs and CDTEMs. So far, NEs have been fabricated by, e.g. carbon nanotubes or nanowhiskers of conductive materials. Here, we present a new method to manufacture NEs using electron beam induced processing (EBIP) - a method well established in the nanofabrication of super sharp probes for scanning probe microscopy - and show their unique performance. NEs manufactured by EBIP combine a high density, diamond-like carbon core (HDC/DLC) with high aspect ratio and tip sharpness, and a highly conductive coating. The EBIP process allows for the batch-fabrication of NEs at larger scales with desired sharpness, shape, mechanical stability and conductivity. NEs, which can easily be mounted into existing SEM/TEM assemblies, have been operated for > 5.000 h without any sign of degradation at a comparatively constant beam current of 3 μA, wherein maximum current oscillations of 10% occurred, while current oscillations were less than 3% over a time span of several minutes. Due to the cold operating temperature and small tip radius, the resolution improved up to 30% compared to a standard Schottky thermal field emitter. The improvement is significant in the low voltage range below 5 kV.

Paper Details

Date Published: 5 April 2012
PDF: 7 pages
Proc. SPIE 8324, Metrology, Inspection, and Process Control for Microlithography XXVI, 83242E (5 April 2012); doi: 10.1117/12.917629
Show Author Affiliations
Sebastian W. Schmidt, nanotools GmbH (Germany)
Christian Penzkofer, nanotools GmbH (Germany)
Bernd Irmer, nanotools GmbH (Germany)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 8324:
Metrology, Inspection, and Process Control for Microlithography XXVI
Alexander Starikov, Editor(s)

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