Flat computers, powerful cell phones and tablets – the integrated circuits, our computers‘ power centers, are becoming increasingly smaller and more complex.
EUV Technology for the production of the next chip generation. Picture source: Fraunhofer-Institute for Laser Technology ILT, Aachen, Germany.
Jointly developed key components for EUV lithography: Dr. Tosten Feigl, Dr. Stefan Braun and Dr. Klaus Bergmann (from left to right) with a collector mirror. Picture source: Dirk Mahler/Fraunhofer
The microchips in today‘s computers already contain some two billion transistors. To get the chip density right, the structures are exposed onto the chips by means of lithography. To be able to meet future requirements, the semi-conductor industry is planning to convert the exposure using a wavelength of 193 nm to a wavelength of just 13.5 nm. This can be achieved only with completely new radiation sources.
The favorite of the Next-Generation lithography is EUV – light with wavelengths in the extreme ultraviolet range. Dr. Klaus Bergmann, Dr. Stefan Braun and Dr. Torsten Feigl from the Fraunhofer Institutes for Laser Technology ILT Aachen, for Material and Beam Technology IWS Dresden and for Applied Optics and Precision Engineering IOF Jena, have developed, with their teams, key elements for EUV lithography: light sources (ILT), collector optics (IOF) and illumination and projection optics (IWS). They will receive a 2012 Joseph-von- Fraunhofer prize for their achievements in this strategic partnership.
Generating EUV radiation
The efficiency of the light source is key to the industrial use of EUV. The team around Klaus Bergmann at ILT developed the first prototypes of the EUV source as early as 2006. There is now a beta version that is already being used to expose chips in industrial applications. “The concept is based on the rapid, pulsed discharge of electrically stored energy. In the process, a small amount of tin is vaporized using a laser and excited with a high current to an emission at 13.5 nm – many thousands of times per second”, explains Bergmann.
World‘s largest collector mirror for EUV lithography
The quality of the collector mirror is crucial to the radiation hitting the exposure mask in exactly the right place. The coating guarantees that the losses remain low and that the quality of the focused EUV radiation is high. “The challenge we faced was to develop and apply a multilayer coating system that combined high EUV reflectance with high thermal and radiation stability onto the strongly curved collector surface”, said Torsten Feigl from IOF. The result is the world‘s largest multi-layer coated EUV mirror with a diameter of more than 660 millimeters.
Coating for optimized reflection on mirrors and lenses
Once the radiation passed the mask, it is exposed onto the chips via further projection mirrors. Stefan Braun and his team at IWS have devised the optimum reflection layer for these components. Magnetron sputtering ensures maximum layer accuracy, without additional polishing processes or in-situ thickness control being required. One machine type for large area precision coating is already in industrial use. Germany is the pioneer of EUV technology. Three institutes have established themselves with their research work as key partners for the supplier industry both in and outside Europe. The new lithography technology is expected to start industrial production in 2015.
Joseph-von-Fraunhofer prize – research for practical applications
Since 1978, Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft has awarded the annual prizes for outstanding scientific achievements of its employees that resolve application-related problems. To date, more than 200 researchers have won this prize. This year, four prizes worth 20,000 euro each will be awarded. The prize winners will also receive a silver pin with the facial profile of the patron saint as it appears in the logo of articles 2 to 5.Contacts at the Fraunhofer ILT
Axel Bauer | Fraunhofer Forschung Kompakt
Researchers take next step toward fusion energy
16.11.2017 | Texas A&M University
Desert solar to fuel centuries of air travel
16.11.2017 | SolarPACES
The formation of stars in distant galaxies is still largely unexplored. For the first time, astron-omers at the University of Geneva have now been able to closely observe a star system six billion light-years away. In doing so, they are confirming earlier simulations made by the University of Zurich. One special effect is made possible by the multiple reflections of images that run through the cosmos like a snake.
Today, astronomers have a pretty accurate idea of how stars were formed in the recent cosmic past. But do these laws also apply to older galaxies? For around a...
Just because someone is smart and well-motivated doesn't mean he or she can learn the visual skills needed to excel at tasks like matching fingerprints, interpreting medical X-rays, keeping track of aircraft on radar displays or forensic face matching.
That is the implication of a new study which shows for the first time that there is a broad range of differences in people's visual ability and that these...
Computer Tomography (CT) is a standard procedure in hospitals, but so far, the technology has not been suitable for imaging extremely small objects. In PNAS, a team from the Technical University of Munich (TUM) describes a Nano-CT device that creates three-dimensional x-ray images at resolutions up to 100 nanometers. The first test application: Together with colleagues from the University of Kassel and Helmholtz-Zentrum Geesthacht the researchers analyzed the locomotory system of a velvet worm.
During a CT analysis, the object under investigation is x-rayed and a detector measures the respective amount of radiation absorbed from various angles....
The quantum world is fragile; error correction codes are needed to protect the information stored in a quantum object from the deteriorating effects of noise. Quantum physicists in Innsbruck have developed a protocol to pass quantum information between differently encoded building blocks of a future quantum computer, such as processors and memories. Scientists may use this protocol in the future to build a data bus for quantum computers. The researchers have published their work in the journal Nature Communications.
Future quantum computers will be able to solve problems where conventional computers fail today. We are still far away from any large-scale implementation,...
Pillared graphene would transfer heat better if the theoretical material had a few asymmetric junctions that caused wrinkles, according to Rice University...
15.11.2017 | Event News
15.11.2017 | Event News
30.10.2017 | Event News
20.11.2017 | Earth Sciences
20.11.2017 | Earth Sciences
20.11.2017 | Life Sciences