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Blur, not Wavelength, Determines Resolution at Advanced Nodes

Blur, not Wavelength, Determines Resolution at Advanced Nodes
by Fred Chen on 10-05-2021 at 10:00 am

Blur not Wavelength Determines Resolution at Advanced Nodes

Lithography has been the driving force for shrinking feature sizes for decades, and the most easily identified factor behind this trend is the reduction of wavelength. G-line (436 nm wavelength) was used for 0.5 um in the late 1980s [1], and I-line (365 nm wavelength) was used down to 0.3 um in the 1990s [2]. Then began the era of deep-ultraviolet… Read More


Cautions In Using High-NA EUV

Cautions In Using High-NA EUV
by Fred Chen on 09-22-2021 at 6:00 am

Cautions In Using High NA EUV

High-NA EUV has received a lot of attention ever since Intel put the spotlight on its receiving the first 0.55 NA EUV tool from ASML [1], expected in 2025. EUV itself has numerous issues which have been enumerated by myself and others, most notoriously the stochastic defects issue. There are also a host of issues related to the propagation… Read More


Stochastic Effects from Photon Distribution Entropy in High-k1 EUV Lithography

Stochastic Effects from Photon Distribution Entropy in High-k1 EUV Lithography
by Fred Chen on 08-04-2021 at 10:00 am

Stochastic Effects from Photon Distribution Entropy in High k1 EUV Lithography

Recent advances in EUV lithography have largely focused on “low-k1” imaging, i.e., features with pitches less than the wavelength divided by the numerical aperture (k1<0.5). With a nominal wavelength of 13.5 nm and a numerical aperture of 0.33, this means sub-40 nm pitches. It is naturally expected that larger… Read More


ASML- A Semiconductor Market Leader-Strong Demand Across all Products/Markets

ASML- A Semiconductor Market Leader-Strong Demand Across all Products/Markets
by Robert Maire on 07-25-2021 at 6:00 am

asml logo 20120410 1

– Strong demand across logic/memory & leading/trailing edge
– Customers want units fast-no time to test
– The main question is can ASML ramp to meet demand?

Revenue & Earnings low due to systems being rushed to customers
ASML reported Euro 4B in sales and Euro 1B in net income which while within guidance… Read More


Stochastic Origins of EUV Feature Edge Roughness

Stochastic Origins of EUV Feature Edge Roughness
by Fred Chen on 07-11-2021 at 10:00 am

Stochastic Origins of EUV Feature Edge Roughness

Due to the higher energy of EUV (13.3-13.7 nm wavelength) compared to ArF (193 nm wavelength) light, images produced by EUV are more susceptible to photon shot noise.

Figure 1. (Left) 40 nm dense (half-pitch) line image projected onto wafer at 35 mJ/cm2; (Right) 20 nm dense (half-pitch) line image projected onto wafer at 70 mJ/cm2.Read More


Contrast Reduction vs. Photon Noise in EUV Lithography

Contrast Reduction vs. Photon Noise in EUV Lithography
by Fred Chen on 05-30-2021 at 6:00 am

Contrast Reduction vs. Photon Noise in EUV Lithography

The stochastic behavior of images formed in EUV lithography has already been highlighted by a number of authors [1-3]. How serious it appears depends on the pixel size with which the photons are bunched. Generally, though, for features of around 20 nm or less, even 1 nm can have at least a +/- 15% gradient across it, which is still a

Read More

KLAC- Great QTR & Guide- Foundry/logic focus driver- Confirms $75B capex in 2021

KLAC- Great QTR & Guide- Foundry/logic focus driver- Confirms $75B capex in 2021
by Robert Maire on 05-02-2021 at 10:00 am

KLAC Foundry Logic

– KLA put up an excellent quarter and Guide
– Rising above the increasing tide of orders
– Confirms $75B capex in 2021 with upside
– Foundry & Logic continue to be the sweet spot for KLA

Business is very very good and getting better

-Revenues came in at $1.8B with EPS of $3.85, all above the range
-Guidance… Read More


SALELE Double Patterning for 7nm and 5nm Nodes

SALELE Double Patterning for 7nm and 5nm Nodes
by Fred Chen on 03-28-2021 at 6:00 am

SALELE Double Patterning for 7nm and 5nm Nodes 4

In this article, we will explore the use of self-aligned litho-etch-litho-etch (SALELE) double patterning for BEOL metal layers in the 7nm node (40 nm minimum metal pitch [1]) with DUV, and 5nm node (28 nm minimum metal pitch [2]) with EUV. First, we mention the evidence that this technique is being used; Xilinx [3] disclosed the… Read More


SPIE 2021 – ASML DUV and EUV Updates

SPIE 2021 – ASML DUV and EUV Updates
by Scotten Jones on 03-17-2021 at 10:00 am

SPIE DUV 2021 ASML NXT4 DryWet Presentation final noWPD2 Page 42

At the SPIE Advanced Lithography Conference held in February, ASML presented the latest information on their Deep Ultraviolet (DUV) and Extreme Ultraviolet (EUV) exposure systems. I recently got to interview Mike Lercel of ASML to discuss the presentations.

DUV

Despite all the attention EUV is getting, most layers are still… Read More


Calculating the Maximum Density and Equivalent 2D Design Rule of 3D NAND Flash

Calculating the Maximum Density and Equivalent 2D Design Rule of 3D NAND Flash
by Fred Chen on 02-21-2021 at 10:00 am

3D NAND Flash unit cell

I recently posted an insightful article [1] published in 2013 on the cost of 3D NAND Flash by Dr. Andrew Walker, which has since received over 10,000 views on LinkedIn. The highlight was the plot of cost vs. the number of layers showing a minimum cost for some layer number, dependent on the etch sidewall angle. In this article, the same… Read More