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21 March 2006 Verification of optical proximity effect in immersion lithography
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193 nm lithography is one of the most promising technologies for next-generation lithography and is being actively evaluated for making it practicable (1,2). First, we evaluated an immersion lithography tool (engineering evaluation tool (EET)) (3) and a dry lithography tool (S307E) with the same numerical aperture (NA = 0.85), manufactured by Nikon Corporation. As a result, an increase in the depth of focus (DOF) of the EET to 200 nm in comparison with the DOF (110 nm) of the dry exposure tool was confirmed in a 90 nm isolated space pattern. Next, the optical proximity effect (OPE) in this pattern was evaluated. Generally, when an immersion lithography tool is compared with a dry one with the same NA or both the tools, only an increase in the DOF is found. However, we confirmed that the OPE (The OPE of the 90 nm isolated space pattern is defined as the difference in the space width between a dense space and an isolated space.) of the dry exposure tool for the 90 nm isolated space pattern reduced from 33.1 nm to 14.1 nm by immersion lithography. As the effect of the reduction of 19 nm, the OPE reduced to 15.2 nm by the effect of the top coatings (TCs) and to 3.8 nm by the optical characteristics. An impact of about 5 nm on the OPE was confirmed by the process parameters-film thickness and the pre-bake temperature of the TC. In the case that the solvent was replaced with a high boiling point solvent, the impact changed from 5 to 20 nm further, the replacement of the solvent had a considerable impact on the OPE. However, this influence differs considerably according to the kind of resists; further, it was shown that the addition of acid materials and a change in the polymer base resulted in a high impact on the OPE for a certain resist. Thus, it was demonstrated that the selection of TC is very important for the OPE in immersion lithography.
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Toshifumi Suganaga, Shinroku Maejima, Tetsuro Hanawa, Takeo Ishibashi, Shuji Nakao, Seiichiro Shirai, Koichiro Narimatsu, Kazuyuki Suko, Kenichi Shiraishi, Yuki Ishii, Tomoyuki Ando, and Katsumi Ohmori "Verification of optical proximity effect in immersion lithography", Proc. SPIE 6154, Optical Microlithography XIX, 61544K (21 March 2006);

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