Navigation Links
New paper reveals nanoscale details of photolithography process
Date:12/12/2007

Scientists at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) have made the first direct measurements of the infinitesimal expansion and collapse of thin polymer films used in the manufacture of advanced semiconductor devices. Its a matter of only a couple of nanometers, but it can be enough to affect the performance of next-generation chip manufacturing. The NIST measurements, detailed in a new paper,* offer a new insight into the complex chemistry that enables the mass production of powerful new integrated circuits.

The smallest critical features in memory or processor chips include transistor gates. In todays most advanced chips, gate length is about 45 nanometers, and the industry is aiming for 32-nanometer gates. To build the nearly one billion transistors in modern microprocessors, manufacturers use photolithography, the high-tech, nanoscale version of printing technology. The semiconductor wafer is coated with a thin film of photoresist, a polymer-based formulation, and exposed with a desired pattern using masks and short wavelength light (193 nm). The light changes the solubility of the exposed portions of the resist, and a developer fluid is used to wash the resist away, leaving the pattern which is used for further processing.

Exactly what happens at the interface between the exposed and unexposed photoresist has become an important issue for the design of 32-nanometer processes. Most of the exposed areas of the photoresist swell slightly and dissolve away when washed with the developer. However this swelling can induce the polymer formulation to separate (like oil and water) and alter the unexposed portions of the resist at the edges of the pattern, roughening the edge. For a 32-nanometer feature, manufacturers want to hold this roughness to at most about two or three nanometers.

Industry models of the process have assumed a fairly simple relationship in which edge roughness in the exposed latent image in the photoresist transfers directly to the developed pattern, but the NIST measurements reveal a much more complicated process. By substituting deuterium-based heavy water in the chemistry, the NIST team was able to use neutrons to observe the entire process at a nanometer scale. They found that at the edges of exposed areas the photoresist components interact to allow the developer to penetrate several nanometers into the unexposed resist. This interface region swells up and remains swollen during the rinsing process, collapsing when the surface is dried. The magnitude of the swelling is significantly larger than the molecules in the resist, and the end effect can limit the ability of the photoresist to achieve the needed edge resolution. On the plus side, say the researchers, their measurements give new insight into how the resist chemistry could be modified to control the swelling to optimal levels.


'/>"/>

Contact: Michael Baum
michael.baum@nist.gov
301-975-2763
National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST)  
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology technology :

1. New White Paper Details Strategies for Biotechnology Companies to Improve EH&S Compliance
2. Free White Papers Detail Sterility Testing Essentials for Medical Device, Pharmaceutical Manufacturers
3. 454 Sequencing(TM): Science Paper Suggests That Structural Variation Plays an Important Role in Genetic Variation
4. New White Paper Details Six Steps to Investigate and Prevent Laboratory Accidents
5. Microtest Offers Free White Paper: Virus Testing for Biological Products: Partnering With a Contract Lab
6. Free White Paper Addresses Challenges of New FDA Regulations Awaiting Combo Product Manufacturers
7. New Survey Reveals Many Adults With High Cholesterol Fail to Take Necessary Steps to Improve Their Condition
8. CCMR gets $2.9M for training grad students in nanoscale science
9. Penn engineers design computer memory in nanoscale form that retrieves data 1,000 times faster
10. CCMR gets $2.9M for training grad students in nanoscale science
11. Penn engineers design computer memory in nanoscale form that retrieves data 1,000 times faster
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
New paper reveals nanoscale details of photolithography process
(Date:3/23/2017)... NetworkNewsWire Editorial Coverage  ... Cancer remains one of ... health care systems, in terms of costs and resources. However, ... the development of innovative and efficient therapies that demonstrate higher ... types of cancer treatments, a growing number of patients receiving ...
(Date:3/22/2017)... 22, 2017 Regeneron Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (NASDAQ: REGN), today ... (RGC), U.K. Biobank and GSK to generate genetic sequence data ... The initiative will enable researchers to gain valuable insights to ... wide range of serious and life threatening diseases. ... Genetic evidence ...
(Date:3/22/2017)... , March 22, 2017 Oramed ... ( www.oramed.com ), a ... oral drug delivery systems, announced today that Dr. ... will deliver a presentation titled, "Oral Insulin for ... Cambridge Healthtech Institute,s Oligonucleotide and Peptide Therapeutics (OPT) ...
(Date:3/22/2017)... CAMBRIDGE, Mass. , March 22, 2017   ... of next-generation cancer therapeutics designed to target cancer stemness ... Patricia S. Andrews as Chief Executive Officer, ... will succeed Chiang J. Li , M.D., FACP, ... company ten years ago. Under his leadership, Boston Biomedical ...
Breaking Biology Technology:
(Date:3/20/2017)... , March 20, 2017 PMD Healthcare announces ... spirometer and Wellness Management System (WMS), a remote, real-time ... in 2010, PMD Healthcare is a Medical Device, Digital ... mission dedicated to creating innovative solutions that empower people ... that intent focus, PMD developed the first ever personal ...
(Date:3/9/2017)... and MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif. , ... Well Made Simple," and 23andMe , the leading ... better food choices.  Zipongo can now provide customers with ... preferences, health goals and biometrics, but also genetic markers ... choices. Zipongo,s personalized food decision support platform ...
(Date:3/2/2017)... Summary This report provides all the ... interests and activities since 2010. ... Read the full report: http://www.reportlinker.com/p03605615-summary/view-report.html ... report provides an in-depth insight into the partnering activity of ... On demand company reports are prepared upon purchase to ensure ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):