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Proceedings Paper

Energy flux method for inspection of contact and VIA layer reticles
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Paper Abstract

Contacts and VIAs are features whose integrity are very susceptible to reticle CD defects or in general, to defects that produce a change of total energy (flux) projected through the reticle. As lithography is extended beyond the 130nm node, the problem becomes more critical. Detecting and analyzing photomask critical dimension (CD) errors and semitransparent defects is vital for qualifying reticles to enable high IC wafer yield for the 90nm node. The current state of the art inspection methods are unable to meet the industry requirements for contact and via features. Using the TeraStarTM pattern inspection system's image computer platform, a new algorithm, TeraFluxTM, has been implemented and tested for the inspection of small 'closed' features. The algorithm compares the transmitted energy flux difference between a test contact (or a group of contacts) and a reference image for small closed features, such as, contacts, trenches, and cells on chrome and half-tone reticles. The algorithm is applicable to both clear and dark field reticles. Sensitivity characterization tests show that the new algorithm provides CD error detection to 6% energy flux variation with low false defect counts. We performed experiments to correlate the sensitivity performance of the new algorithm with wafer printability results. The results will be presented together with results of inspections results of programmed defect plates and production reticles.

Paper Details

Date Published: 2 June 2003
PDF: 12 pages
Proc. SPIE 5038, Metrology, Inspection, and Process Control for Microlithography XVII, (2 June 2003); doi: 10.1117/12.504577
Show Author Affiliations
Hector I. Garcia, KLA-Tencor Corp. (United States)
William Waters Volk, KLA-Tencor Corp. (United States)
Yalin Xiong, KLA-Tencor Corp. (United States)
Sterling G. Watson, KLA-Tencor Corp. (United States)
Zongchang Yu, KLA-Tencor Corp. (United States)
Zhian Guo, KLA-Tencor Corp. (United States)
Lantian Wang, KLA-Tencor Corp. (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 5038:
Metrology, Inspection, and Process Control for Microlithography XVII
Daniel J. Herr, Editor(s)

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