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27 March 2014 High-volume manufacturing equipment and processing for directed self-assembly applications
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Directed Self-Assembly (DSA) is one of the most promising technologies for scaling feature sizes to 16 nm and below. Both line/space and hole patterns can be created with various block copolymer morphologies, and these materials allow for molecular-level control of the feature shapes—exactly the characteristics that are required for creating high fidelity lithographic patterns. Over the past five years, the industry has been addressing the technical challenges of maturing this technology by addressing concerns such as pattern defectivity, materials specifications, design layout, and tool requirements. Though the learning curve has been steep, DSA has made significant progress toward implementation in high-volume manufacturing. Tokyo Electron has been focused on the best methods of achieving high-fidelity patterns using DSA processing. Unlike other technologies where optics and photons drive the formation of patterns, DSA relies on surface interactions and polymer thermodynamics to determine the final pattern shapes. These phenomena, in turn, are controlled by the processing that occurs on clean-tracks, etchers, and cleaning systems, and so a host of new technology has been developed to facilitate DSA. In this paper we will discuss the processes and hardware that are emerging as critical enablers for DSA implementation, and we will also demonstrate the kinds of high fidelity patterns typical of mainstream DSA integrations.
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