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Proceedings Paper

Use Of A Scanning Electron Microscope For Critical Dimension Measurements On A Semiconductor Production Line
Author(s): Peter W. Grant
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Paper Abstract

This paper describes the use of a scanning electron microscope (SEM) for critical dimen-sion (CD) measurements on a semiconductor manufacturing line. The SEM was installed as a successor to optical measuring tools that were becoming inadequate for the task because diffraction and interference effects are limiting the accuracy of measurements, and resulting uncertainties are exceeding the reduced tolerances allowed in the production of electronic circuit patterns. During a year's time, the SEM system performance in processing some 6,000 wafer loads on a pilot line was investigated. Among the significant results of the investigation are the following: 1) Because the system resolution is limited to 200 A at 1 kV, comparisons must be made with measurements made on a high-voltage (25 kV) SEM in order to obtain proper edge parameter definitions. 2) It was possible to measure all mask levels with the SEM without sample surface charging hiding features. We also found no circuit damage traceable to the electron beam. 3) We found that it was possible to train operators adequately to achieve throughput rates (20-30 measurements per hour) which were comparable to those achieved with optical tools. 4) By observing human factors in the use of this complex system, we were able to improve ease of learning and ease of use by line operators, increasing the system's acceptability to these people, thus assuring better measurements in the manufacturing environment.

Paper Details

Date Published: 2 January 1986
PDF: 4 pages
Proc. SPIE 0565, Micron and Submicron Integrated Circuit Metrology, (2 January 1986); doi: 10.1117/12.949747
Show Author Affiliations
Peter W. Grant, IBM General Technology Division (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 0565:
Micron and Submicron Integrated Circuit Metrology
Kevin M. Monahan, Editor(s)

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