2021 roadmap for lithography used in semiconductor chip and device manufacturing is published

The open access roadmap for lithography devices and systems is published in the SPIE Journal of Micro/Nanopatterning, Materials, and Metrology
26 October 2021
Image shows sinuous road with multiple marked points along the way.

BELLINGHAM, Washington, USA — This month, the Journal of Micro/Nanopatterning, Materials, and Metrology (JM3), published the "International Roadmap for Devices and Systems lithography roadmap" by Mark Neisser. This paper reviews and complements the lithography chapter of the annual International Roadmap for Devices and Systems (IRDS) report, which also includes topics like factory integration, metrology, CMOS, yield enhancement, and application benchmarking.

The 2021 lithography roadmap will help guide the lithography industry's plans for future investment, research, and development, and details the field's requirements, possible options, and expected challenges for the next 15 years.

Key takeaways include:
• Logic devices will drive leading-edge lithography
• Improved extreme ultraviolet lithography is a leading candidate for next-gen semiconductors, though other options are also possible, particular for cost reduction and niche applications
• Short-term challenges for the industry include stochastics, edge placement error, and cost
• Short-term resist dose-to-print is expected to rise substantially unless critical process innovation occurs

The roadmap projects future challenges for semiconductors and possible solutions to those challenges. It shows that logic devices will drive shrinking critical dimensions and improvements in patterning for roughly the next 10 years. It is the product of the work of an international collection of experts from industry and academia, including representatives from leading semiconductor suppliers ASML, Nikon, IMEC, Samsung, Lam Research, and Zeiss, among others.

"Roadmaps such as this are invaluable for lithographers," notes JM3 Editor-in-Chief Harry Levinson. "They enable us to have meaningful exchanges regarding technology parameters and targets that would otherwise be too company-sensitive to discuss. They also provide a common reference for people focused on different elements of lithographic technology - equipment, materials, masks, and metrology."

JM3 is available to subscribers in the SPIE Digital Library. It is one of 12 journals currently published by SPIE, the international society for optics and photonics.

About SPIE

SPIE is the international society for optics and photonics, an educational not-for-profit organization founded in 1955 to advance light-based science, engineering, and technology. The Society serves more than 258,000 constituents from 184 countries, offering conferences and their published proceedings, continuing education, books, journals, and the SPIE Digital Library. In 2020, SPIE provided over $5 million in community support including scholarships and awards, outreach and advocacy programs, travel grants, public policy, and educational resources. www.spie.org.

Daneet Steffens
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