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3105 results about "Photolithography" patented technology

Photolithography, also called optical lithography or UV lithography, is a process used in microfabrication to pattern parts of a thin film or the bulk of a substrate (also called a wafer). It uses light to transfer a geometric pattern from a photomask (also called an optical mask) to a photosensitive (that is, light-sensitive) chemical photoresist on the substrate. A series of chemical treatments then either etches the exposure pattern into the material or enables deposition of a new material in the desired pattern upon the material underneath the photoresist. In complex integrated circuits, a CMOS wafer may go through the photolithographic cycle as many as 50 times.

Methods and Scatterometers, Lithographic Systems, and Lithographic Processing Cells

In a method of determining the focus of a lithographic apparatus used in a lithographic process on a substrate, the lithographic process is used to form a structure on the substrate, the structure having at least one feature which has an asymmetry in the printed profile which varies as a function of the focus of the lithographic apparatus on the substrate. A first image of the periodic structure is formed and detected while illuminating the structure with a first beam of radiation. The first image is formed using a first part of non-zero order diffracted radiation. A second image of the periodic structure is foamed and detected while illuminating the structure with a second beam of radiation. The second image is formed using a second part of the non-zero order diffracted radiation which is symmetrically opposite to the first part in a diffraction spectrum. The ratio of the intensities of the measured first and second portions of the spectra is determined and used to determine the asymmetry in the profile of the periodic structure and/or to provide an indication of the focus on the substrate. In the same instrument, an intensity variation across the detected portion is determined as a measure of process-induced variation across the structure. A region of the structure with unwanted process variation can be identified and excluded from a measurement of the structure.

Method for integrated circuit fabrication using pitch multiplication

Different sized features in the array and in the periphery of an integrated circuit are patterned on a substrate in a single step. In particular, a mixed pattern, combining two separately formed patterns, is formed on a single mask layer and then transferred to the underlying substrate. The first of the separately formed patterns is formed by pitch multiplication and the second of the separately formed patterns is formed by conventional photolithography. The first of the separately formed patterns includes lines that are below the resolution of the photolithographic process used to form the second of the separately formed patterns. These lines are made by forming a pattern on photoresist and then etching that pattern into an amorphous carbon layer. Sidewall pacers having widths less than the widths of the un-etched parts of the amorphous carbon are formed on the sidewalls of the amorphous carbon. The amorphous carbon is then removed, leaving behind the sidewall spacers as a mask pattern. Thus, the spacers form a mask having feature sizes less than the resolution of the photolithography process used to form the pattern on the photoresist. A protective material is deposited around the spacers. The spacers are further protected using a hard mask and then photoresist is formed and patterned over the hard mask. The photoresist pattern is transferred through the hard mask to the protective material. The pattern made out by the spacers and the temporary material is then transferred to an underlying amorphous carbon hard mask layer. The pattern, having features of difference sizes, is then transferred to the underlying substrate.

Visual inspection and verification system

A method and apparatus for inspecting a photolithography mask for defects is provided. The inspection method comprises providing a defect area image to an image simulator wherein the defect area image is an image of a portion of a photolithography mask, and providing a set of lithography parameters as a second input to the image simulator. The defect area image may be provided by an inspection tool which scans the photolithography mask for defects using a high resolution microscope and captures images of areas of the mask around identified potential defects. The image simulator generates a first simulated image in response to the defect area image and the set of lithography parameters. The first simulated image is a simulation of an image which would be printed on a wafer if the wafer were to be exposed to an illumination source directed through the portion of the mask. The method may also include providing a second simulated image which is a simulation of the wafer print of the portion of the design mask which corresponds to the portion represented by the defect area image. The method also provides for the comparison of the first and second simulated images in order to determine the printability of any identified potential defects on the photolithography mask. A method of determining the process window effect of any identified potential defects is also provided for.

Integrated circuits with substrate protrusions, including (but not limited to) floating gate memories

A floating gate memory cell's channel region (104) is at least partially located in a fin-like protrusion (110P) of a semiconductor substrate. The floating gate's top surface may come down along at least two sides of the protrusion to a level below the top (110P-T) of the protrusion. The control gate's bottom surface may also comes down to a level below the top of the protrusion. The floating gate's bottom surface may comes down to a level below the top of the protrusion by at least 50% of the protrusion's height. The dielectric (120) separating the floating gate from the protrusion can be at least as thick at the top of the protrusion as at a level (L2) which is below the top of the protrusion by at least 50% of the protrusion's height. A very narrow fin or other narrow feature in memory and non-memory integrated circuits can be formed by providing a first layer (320) and then forming spacers (330) from a second layer without photolithography on sidewalls of features made from the first layer. The narrow fin or other feature are then formed without further photolithography in areas between the adjacent spacers. More particularly, a third layer (340) is formed in these areas, and the first layer and the spacers are removed selectively to the third layer. The third layer is used as a mask to form the narrow features.

Method of forming amorphous carbon film and method of manufacturing semiconductor device using the same

The present invention relates to a method of forming an amorphous carbon film and a method of manufacturing a semiconductor device using the method. An amorphous carbon film is formed on a substrate by vaporizing a liquid hydrocarbon compound, which has chain structure and one double bond, and supplying the compound to a chamber, and ionizing the compound. The amorphous carbon film is used as a hard mask film.
It is possible to easily control characteristics of the amorphous carbon film, such as a deposition rate, an etching selectivity, a refractive index (n), a light absorption coefficient (k) and stress, so as to satisfy user's requirements. In particular, it is possible to lower the refractive index (n) and the light absorption coefficient (k). As a result, it is possible to perform a photolithography process without an antireflection film that prevents the diffuse reflection of a lower material layer.
Further, a small amount of reaction by-product is generated during a deposition process, and it is possible to easily remove reaction by-products that are attached on the inner wall of a chamber. For this reason, it is possible to increase a cycle of a process for cleaning a chamber, and to increase parts changing cycles of a chamber. As a result, it is possible to save time and cost.
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