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Mesoscale modeling: a study of particle generation and line-edge roughness

[+] Author Affiliations
Siddharth Chauhan

The University of Texas at Austin, Department of Chemical Engineering, Austin, Texas 78712

Mark Somervell

Tokyo Electron America Ltd., 2400 Grove Boulevard, Austin, Texas 78741

Michael Carcasi

Tokyo Electron America Ltd., 2400 Grove Boulevard, Austin, Texas 78741

Steven Scheer

Tokyo Electron America Ltd., 2400 Grove Boulevard, Austin, Texas 78741

Roger T. Bonnecaze

The University of Texas at Austin, Department of Chemical Engineering, Austin, Texas 78712

Chris A. Mack

Lithoguru.com, 1605 Watchhill Road, Austin, Texas 78703

C. Grant Willson

The University of Texas at Austin, Department of Chemical Engineering, Austin, Texas 78712

J. Micro/Nanolith. MEMS MOEMS. 13(1), 013012 (Mar 12, 2014). doi:10.1117/1.JMM.13.1.013012
History: Received June 27, 2013; Revised November 6, 2013; Accepted February 6, 2014
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Abstract.  A lattice-type Monte Carlo–based mesoscale model and simulation of the lithography process have been adapted to study the insoluble particle generation that arises from statistically improbable events. These events occur when there is a connected pathway of soluble material that envelops a volume of insoluble material due to fluctuations in the deprotection profile. The simulation shows that development erodes the insoluble material into the developer stream and produces a cavity on the line edge that can be far larger than a single polymer molecule. The insoluble particles can coalesce to form aggregates that deposit on the wafer surface. The effect of the resist formulation, exposure, postexposure bake, and development variables on particle generation was analyzed in both low- and high-frequency domains. It is suggested that different mechanisms are dominant for the formation of line-edge roughness (LER) at different frequencies. The simulations were used to assess the commonly proposed measures to reduce LER such as the use of low molecular weight polymers, addition of quenchers, varying acid diffusion length, etc. The simulation can be used to help set process variables to minimize the extent of particle generation and LER.

© 2014 Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers

Citation

Siddharth Chauhan ; Mark Somervell ; Michael Carcasi ; Steven Scheer ; Roger T. Bonnecaze, et al.
"Mesoscale modeling: a study of particle generation and line-edge roughness", J. Micro/Nanolith. MEMS MOEMS. 13(1), 013012 (Mar 12, 2014). ; http://dx.doi.org/10.1117/1.JMM.13.1.013012


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