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Proceedings Paper

The lithographic lens: its history and evolution
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Paper Abstract

The history of Nikon's projection lens development for optical microlithography started with the first "Ultra Micro-Nikkor" in 1962, which was used for making photo-masks. Nikon's first wafer stepper "NSR-1010G" was developed with a g-line projection lens in 1980. Since then, many kinds of projection lenses have been developed for each generation of stepper or scanner. In addition to increasing numerical aperture (NA) and field size, there have been many technical transitions for the projection lens, such as shortening the wavelength, controlling Zernike aberrations with phase measurement interferometry (PMI) for low k1 lithography, using aspherical lenses, applying kinematic optomechanical mounts, and utilizing free asphere re-polishing steps in the lens manufacturing process. The most recent advancement in projection lens technology is liquid immersion and polarization control for high NA imaging. NA now exceeds 1.0, which is the theoretical limit for dry (in air) imaging. At each transition, the amount of information that goes through the projection lens has been increased. In this paper, the history of the microlithographic lens is reviewed from several different points of view, such as specification, optical design, lens manufacturing, etc. In addition, future options of the projection lens are discussed briefly.

Paper Details

Date Published: 15 March 2006
PDF: 14 pages
Proc. SPIE 6154, Optical Microlithography XIX, 615403 (15 March 2006); doi: 10.1117/12.656163
Show Author Affiliations
Tomoyuki Matsuyama, Precision Equipment Co., Nikon Corp. (Japan)
Yasuhiro Ohmura, Precision Equipment Co., Nikon Corp. (Japan)
David M. Williamson, Nikon Research Corp. of America (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 6154:
Optical Microlithography XIX
Donis G. Flagello, Editor(s)

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