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Proceedings Paper

Yield- and cost-driven fracturing for variable shaped-beam mask writing
Author(s): Andrew B. Kahng; Xu Xu; Alex Zelikovsky
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Paper Abstract

Mask manufacturing for the approaching 90nm and 65nm nodes increasingly deploys variable shaped beam (VSB) mask writing machines. This has led to high interest in the fracturing methods which are at the heart of layout data preparation for VSB mask writing. In this paper, we set out the main requirements for fracturing and suggest a new solution approach based on integer linear programming (ILP). The main advantage of the new method is that the ILP finds optimal solutions while being flexible enough to take into account all specified requirements. We also suggest several decomposition (polygon partitioning) heuristics which speed up the ILP approach. Experimental comparisons with leading industry tools show significant improvement in quality, as well as acceptable scalability, of the proposed methods. In particular, our fracturing solutions reduce shot count (which reflects write time and mask cost) and dramatically reduce sliver count (which reflects the risk of mask critical-dimension errors). Our results reveal significant headroom that can be exploited by future design-to-mask tools to reduce the manufacturing variability and cost of IC designs.

Paper Details

Date Published: 6 December 2004
PDF: 12 pages
Proc. SPIE 5567, 24th Annual BACUS Symposium on Photomask Technology, (6 December 2004); doi: 10.1117/12.568526
Show Author Affiliations
Andrew B. Kahng, Univ. of California/San Diego (United States)
Xu Xu, Univ. of California/San Diego (United States)
Alex Zelikovsky, Georgia State Univ. (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 5567:
24th Annual BACUS Symposium on Photomask Technology
Wolfgang Staud; J. Tracy Weed, Editor(s)

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