SPIE Advanced Lithography is known for featuring up-to-the minute news on key lithography issues, and this year’s event certainly didn’t disappoint. The week kicked off with a number of expert discussions at LithoVision on Sunday, followed by a myriad of invaluable SPIE technical presentations continuing through late in the day on Thursday. The so-called “battle” between immersion extension and EUV solutions featured heavily during the conference, as well as in the press. In case you weren’t able to attend this year’s conference, excerpts from various media channels are reported here.
At LithoVision, Dr. Mark Phillips, Intel Senior Principal Engineer, reported that success at the 14 nm node with 193 nm immersion requires intrinsic tool performance capable of satisfying challenging edge placement error and focus requirements. He also noted it is essential that scanners yield their intrinsically best performance on product wafers, not just on test wafers, and that it’s imperative for metrology/data analysis tools to assist in process development. Then, Nikon specialists announced that even tighter budgets and enhanced stability are required beyond 14 nm, and revealed how the newly launched NSR-S630D delivers world-class mix-and-match overlay and focus control to enable the 10/7 nm node. 450 mm platform design benefits for 300 mm systems were also addressed.
Nikon Precision Equipment Company General Manager Masato Hamatani discussed the challenges and requirements associated with 10/7 nm node manufacturing at the recent LithoVision symposium. His roadmap presentation discussed advances in ArF immersion scanners to make them ready for 193 immersion extension, the use of which remains important due to EUV’s continued delays in infrastructure development and questionable cost benefits. Hamatani described key progressions in scanner performance and productivity, and showed that Nikon immersion extension solutions will satisfy litho process node requirements in 300/450 mm. Senior Vice President Toshikazu Umatate also provided insight on the advantages of 193i.
Speaking at the Nikon technical symposium in February, Dr. Christopher Progler, CTO and VP of Strategic Planning for Photronics, Inc. delivered an up-to-date view of the State of Lithography that focused on lithography shrink strategies as they relate to mask technology. Dr. Progler emphasized that every nanometer matters, and discussed the importance of maximizing signal to noise ratio of the total process, as well as the need to reduce the barriers of entry associated with high mask count designs.