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Proceedings Paper

Wafer inspection as alternative approach to mask defect qualification
Author(s): Christian Holfeld; Frank Katzwinkel; Uwe Seifert; Andreas Mothes; Jan Hendrik Peters
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Paper Abstract

Defect inspection is one of the major challenges in the manufacturing process of photomasks. The absence of any printing defect on patterned mask is an ultimate requirement for the mask shop, and an increasing effort is spent in order to detect and subsequently eliminate these defects. Current DUV inspection tools use wavelengths five times or more larger than the critical defect size on advanced photomasks. This makes the inspectability of high-end mask patterns (including strong OPC and small SRAF's) and sufficient defect sensitivity a real challenge. The paper evaluates the feasibility of inspecting the printed wafer as an alternative way for the high-sensitivity defect inspection of photomasks. Defects originating in the mask can efficiently be filtered as repeated defects in the various dies on wafer. Using a programmed-defect mask of 65-nm technology, a reliable detection of the printing defects was achieved with an optimized inspection process. These defects could successfully be traced back to the photomask in a semi-automated process in order to enable a following repair step. This study shows that wafer inspection is able to provide a full defect qualification of advanced photomasks with the specific advantage of assessing the actual printability of arbitrary defects.

Paper Details

Date Published: 25 October 2007
PDF: 9 pages
Proc. SPIE 6730, Photomask Technology 2007, 673023 (25 October 2007); doi: 10.1117/12.746398
Show Author Affiliations
Christian Holfeld, Advanced Mask Technology Ctr. GmbH & Co. KG (Germany)
Frank Katzwinkel, Qimonda Dresden GmbH & Co. OHG (Germany)
Uwe Seifert, Qimonda Dresden GmbH & Co. OHG (Germany)
Andreas Mothes, Advanced Mask Technology Ctr. GmbH & Co. KG (Germany)
Jan Hendrik Peters, Advanced Mask Technology Ctr. GmbH & Co. KG (Germany)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 6730:
Photomask Technology 2007
Robert J. Naber; Hiroichi Kawahira, Editor(s)

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