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Proceedings Paper

Demonstrating the value of integrated reticle automation solutions in high volume wafer fab manufacturing
Author(s): Frank CM Wu; Chin Kuei Chang; Yousheng Yin; Jeffery Liang; Chain Ping Chen; Wei Chen; Donghwan Song; Jinghua Zeng; Kunal Rohilla; Alexander Tan; Yanghui Liu
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Paper Abstract

In an advanced IC fab, reticle inspection issues are critical as even one killer defect on the reticle can potentially affect thousands of wafers. Human errors such as defect mis-classification may lead to 70% of reticle issues that may affect production efficiency or even impact yield. With the adoption of RET techniques like aggressive OPC and SRAF combined with increasing MEEF and smaller defects, reticle dispositioning is becoming even harder and very time consuming in production. Even an experienced engineer may make a mistake especially when dealing with 40nm and below design nodes. The concept of automation to prevent mistakes in operation has been promoted for many years but a comprehensive solution which covers intelligent task assignment and auto reticle dispositioning in volume production has been missing. Working together with KLA, USCXM proposed a detailed methodology to overcome the above difficulties. From the very beginning, USCXM used Systematic Auto Recipe Creation (SARC) to create recipes for reticle inspections even before the reticles arrived in the fab. Also, an “OHT taxi mode” to improve pod utilization combined with the Reticle Management System (RMS) decision tree algorithm intelligently determined reticle inspection frequency based on wafer requirement and tool redundancy. Finally, USCXM automated final reticle dispositioning steps, such as, auto-releasing or auto-holding the reticle based on KLA’s Reticle Analyzer (RA) results. The overall implementation resulted in 25% improvement in inspection capacity and 50% reduction in operational cost compared to the traditional flow. Further, 92% accuracy for reticle auto-dispositioning was achieved with zero under-estimation. This integrated flow has proven to be invaluable for USCXM and is now deployed in full volume reticle manufacturing production.

Paper Details

Date Published: 26 September 2019
PDF: 9 pages
Proc. SPIE 11148, Photomask Technology 2019, 111481O (26 September 2019); doi: 10.1117/12.2536788
Show Author Affiliations
Frank CM Wu, United Semiconductor (Xiamen) Co., Ltd. (China)
Chin Kuei Chang, United Semiconductor (Xiamen) Co., Ltd. (China)
Yousheng Yin, United Semiconductor (Xiamen) Co., Ltd. (China)
Jeffery Liang, United Semiconductor (Xiamen) Co., Ltd. (China)
Chain Ping Chen, United Semiconductor (Xiamen) Co., Ltd. (China)
Wei Chen, KLA Corp. (United States)
Donghwan Song, KLA Corp. (United States)
Jinghua Zeng, KLA Corp. (United States)
Kunal Rohilla, KLA Corp. (United States)
Alexander Tan, KLA Corp. (United States)
Yanghui Liu, KLA Corp. (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 11148:
Photomask Technology 2019
Jed H. Rankin; Moshe E. Preil, Editor(s)

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