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SPIE Photomask Technology and Scanning Microscopies 2015


SPIE Photomask at 35 years: the premier worldwide technical meeting for the mask business

SPIE Photomask 2015 symposium chair Naoya Hayashi, Dai Nippon Printing
SPIE Photomask 2015 symposium chair Naoya Hayashi, Dai Nippon Printing


Yow-Gwo (Henry) Wang
Yow-Gwo (Henry) Wang

Sometimes-sunny, sometimes-foggy Monterey was home once again to SPIE Photomask -- in its 35th year -- and SPIE Scanning Microscopies ran 29 September through 1 October. More than 440 attendees were on hand for 100 technical papers and an 18-company exhibition.

Symposium Chair Naoya Hayashi of Dai Nippon Printing Co., Ltd. and cochair Bryan Kasprowicz of Photronics, Inc. opened with presentation of the 2015 BACUS Scholarship Award to Yow-Gwo (Henry) Wang, a student at the University of California, Berkeley.


Mask challenges at the leading edge

Harry Levinson
Harry Levinson

Harry Levinson of GlobalFoundries Inc. followed with a keynote talk on lithography and mask challenges at the leading edge. Levinson, a Senior Director at GlobalFoundries, was one of the first users of 5× steppers in Silicon Valley, and an early participant in 248nm and 193nm lithography.

Pushing optical lithography to its limits necessitates exceedingly tight mask-making process control, and the use of EUV lithography introduces many new technical challenges associated with a mask architecture very different from optical masks, Levinson noted. Because of higher resolution, smaller defects and LER at higher spatial frequencies print with EUV lithography than with optical lithography.

(Read the Solid State Technology report on Levinson's talk: "Mask Conference Highlights Progress in Lithography".)


Tuesday's sessions

Hayashi, Kasprowicz, and Michael Postek of the National Institute of Standards and Technology chaired the first of the week's joint sessions with Scanning Microscopies.

The 18-company, 2-day Photomask exhibition opened mid-morning, with displays of the latest applications for mask inspection, repair, metrology, and cleaning, nanoimprint, patterning, etching, and more.

Photronics Award
Rene Claus, center, receives the Photronics
Leadership Best Student Paper Award; with
Naoya Hayashi, left, and Bryan Kasprowicz, right

Photronics Leadership Best Student Papers Award finalists were announced in a Student Session chaired by Kasprowicz, Jim Wiley of ASML Inc., and Thomas Scheruebl of Carl Zeiss SMT GmbH.

The top prize, including a $1,000 award, went to Rene Claus of the University of California, Berkeley. Four finalists each received prizes of $500.

Other Tuesday sessions were on Edge Placement Error in Multi-Patterning Masks, chaired by Peter Buck of Mentor Graphics Corp. and Aki Fujimura of D2S, Inc.; and EUV Mask Infrastructure Readiness, chaired by Emily Gallagher of IMEC and Thomas Faure of GlobalFoundries Inc.

(For more, see the Fine Line Video Journal "Shot Talk" interview [8:59] with Aki Fujimura for his observations on developments in EUV reported at SPIE Photomask and on trends in mask masking.)

Tuesday's poster and exhibition reception highlighted papers on EUV, mask data preparation , material and process, metrology, and patterning.

(Read the Solid State Technology report on Tuesday's sessions: "Intel Mask Engineer Reports 'Steady Progress' in EUV Masks".)

SPIE Photomask 2015 exhibition
Representatives from 18 companies meet with visitors in the exhibition


Wednesday's sessions

Wednesday opened with a second Photonics and Scanning Microscopies joint session, chaired by Postek and Jan Hendrik Peters, Carl Zeiss SMS GmbH.

Other sessions covered:

  • EUV Simulation (chairs Paul Allen, Toppan Photomasks, Inc., and Banqiu Wu, Applied Materials, Inc.)
  • Photomask Technology for Alternative Lithography: NIL (chairs Douglas Resnick, Canon Nanotechnologies, Inc., and Uwe Dietze, SUSS MicroTec Inc.
  • Mask Data Preparation and Mask Process Correction (chairs Bala Thumma, Synopsys, Inc., and Linyong Pang, D2S, Inc.).
SPIE Photomask 2015
Between sessions


An evening of honors -- and entertainment

The entertaining evening reception provided an opportunity to honor the contributions of Franklin Kalk with the presentation of the Photomask Lifetime Achievement Award. Kalk is an executive senior vice president at Toppan Photomasks Inc., and holds numerous patents, demonstrating his significant impact on the technology of mask making.

The Zeiss Award, presented this year in memory of Oliver Kienzle who died unexpectedly after SPIE Photomask 2014, and sponsored by Zeiss and ASML, was presented to Takahiro Fujino of the University of Hyogo. The award includes a $1,500 prize.

Peter Ackmann and Franklin Kalk Zeiss Award
Paul Ackmann, at left, and
Lifetime Achievement Award winner Franklin Kalk
Jan Hendrik Peters, at left, presents
the Zeiss Award to Takahiro Fujino


As always the evening provided good networking and the best in entertainment; see more photos in the 'Hermetically sealed' gallery below.

SPIE Photomask 2015 reception SPIE Photomask 2015 reception
SPIE Photomask 2015 reception SPIE Photomask 2015 reception


From Photomask Japan

During Thursday morning's session for invited and best papers, Susumu Iida of EUVL Infrastructure Development Ctr., Inc., was awarded the 2015 Photomask Japan Best Paper Award, for "Pattern inspection of etched multilayer EUV masks" (9635-35). The award included a $1,500 prize and was sponsored by ASML.

Yoshinori Nagaoka, KLATencor, presented an overview of the Photomask Japan 2015 panel discussion, on "Who wins the center stage for 7nm-node HVM in 2018?"

Session chairs were Uwe Behringer, UBC Microelectronics, and Brian Grenon, Grenon Consulting, Inc.


Panel: ready for EUV?

A panel discussion explored the topic "EUV mask readiness: where are we?" -- looking at questions such as: what mask challenges currently exist to introduce EUV into manufacturing; which are show-stoppers; and what are the work-arounds while solutions are being developed.

Moderated by Kasprowicz and Hayashi, the panel included:

  • Laurent Tuo, Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. Ltd.
  • Jeff Farnsworth, Intel Corp.
  • Peter Buck, Mentor Graphics Corp.
  • Emily Gallagher, IMEC
  • Jan Hendrik Peters,  Carl Zeiss SMT GmbH
  • Yalin Xiong, KLA-Tencor Corp.
  • Takahiro Onoue,  HOYA Corp.

(For more, read the Solid State Technology report of the panel discussion:"SPIE Photomask Panel: Money Is An Issue".)

SPIE Photomask 2015 panelists


Thursday sessions and awards

Other sessions were on Metrology and Inspection, chaired by Mark Wylie, KLA-Tencor Idaho, and Mark Jee, HOYA Corp. USA; and Patterning and Process, chaired by Kenichi Saito, NuFlare Technology, Inc., and Russell Cinque, JEOL USA Inc.

Naoya Hayashi and Jan Hendrik Peters
Jan Hendrik Peters, accepting for Sascha Perlitz
Naoya Hayashi and Shingo Yoshikawa
Shingo Yoshikawa
Naoya Hayashi and Davide Dattilo
Davide Dattilo

Hayashi presented Best Poster Awards to:

  • First place, "Actinic review of EUV masks: status and recent results of the AIMSTM EUV System," Sascha Perlitz, Carl Zeiss SMT GmbH, et al. (9635-75)
  • Second place, "The capability of lithography simulation based on MVM-SEM system," Shingo Yoshikawa, Dai Nippon Printing Co., Ltd., et al. (9635-67)
  • Third place, "Ruthenium capping layer preservation for 100X clean through pH driven effects," Davide Dattilo, SUSS MicroTec Photomask Equipment GmbH & Co. KG, et al., (9635-47).


Next year -- in San Jose

SPIE Photomask will move to the San Jose Convention Center for 2016, due to an extensive remodeling project beginning next month at the Monterey Conference Center.

Dates are 12-14 September.


Additional related coverage

"Gaps remain for EUV masks," Semiconductor Engineering

"eBeam Initiative survey shows rising optimism in EUV lithography, multi-beam technology for photomask production," Solid State Technology

"Perspectives: eBeam Initiative Luminary Panel at BACUS 2015," Fine Line Video Journal [15:17]

"Taming mask metrology," Semiconductor Engineering


'Hermetically sealed'

Photos tell the story: the Photomask Reception was well-enjoyed.

SPIE Photomask 2015 reception SPIE Photomask 2015 reception
SPIE Photomask 2015 reception SPIE Photomask 2015 reception
SPIE Photomask 2015 reception SPIE Photomask 2015 reception

 SPIE Photomask 2015 reception

SPIE Photomask 2015 reception


All photos courtesy Bernd Geh, except where noted.

SPIE Photomask Technology 2015

29 September - 1 October 2015
Monterey, California, USA


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