Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Flat fixtures for EUV exposure

19.01.2009
Exposing silicon wafers to light during chip manufacture requires special fixtures called chucks. Novel electrostatic chucks made of glass ceramics are incredibly flat. This prevents structural distortions on the exposure mask and the silicon chip.

Smaller, even smaller, tiny. Miniaturization in chip manufacture is progressing at an impressive pace. Researchers continue to push the physical limits of semiconductor technology and are developing methods of making circuit elements even smaller and faster. At the same time, the associated processes are having to meet increasingly high requirements.


The experts predict a promising future for EUV lithography – lithography with extremely shortwave ultraviolet light. This works as follows: Light with a wavelength of 13 nanometers is guided through a reflection mask onto the silicon wafers, where it generates nanometer structures.

As the exposure processes take place in a vacuum, special fixtures are necessary to accommodate the silicon wafers and the exposure mask, and to hold them firmly in place. The technical term for these is chucks. Researchers at the Fraunhofer Institute for Applied Optics and Precision Engineering IOF have developed exceptionally precise electrostatic chucks for EUV lithography.

“The chucks need to be extremely smooth and even,” says Fraunhofer IOF scientist Dr. Gerhard Kalkowski. “If they are not super-flat, the result is height deviations in the mask, which lead to structural distortions on the silicon chips.” The IOF researchers are using special glass materials and have developed new technologies to increase the levelness of the chucks, with excellent results: While height deviations of over 100 nanometers had been measured previously, the new material reduced them to 74 nanometers, setting a new record. The chuck and the mask virtually merge into a single plane.

The IOF chucks also have other advantages: “The material guarantees high holding strengths, distributed across the entire surface, and reduces abrasion,” says Kalkowski. Two properties of great importance to the EUV exposure process.

The researchers’ findings will greatly benefit the chip industry, as chip manufacturers rely particularly on the stability and precision of the chucks in order to be able to use EUV lithography in mass production. Meanwhile, the IOF researchers are working towards their next goal: flatter than 50 nanometers.

Dr. Gerhard Kalkowski | alfa
Further information:
http://www.iof.fraunhofer.de
http://www.fraunhofer.de/EN/press/pi/2009/01/ResearchNews012009Topic3.jsp

More articles from Information Technology:

nachricht Modeling the brain with 'Lego bricks'
19.06.2017 | University of Luxembourg

nachricht Strain measurement – faster and more versatile than ever
14.06.2017 | Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft

All articles from Information Technology >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Climate satellite: Tracking methane with robust laser technology

Heatwaves in the Arctic, longer periods of vegetation in Europe, severe floods in West Africa – starting in 2021, scientists want to explore the emissions of the greenhouse gas methane with the German-French satellite MERLIN. This is made possible by a new robust laser system of the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT in Aachen, which achieves unprecedented measurement accuracy.

Methane is primarily the result of the decomposition of organic matter. The gas has a 25 times greater warming potential than carbon dioxide, but is not as...

Im Focus: How protons move through a fuel cell

Hydrogen is regarded as the energy source of the future: It is produced with solar power and can be used to generate heat and electricity in fuel cells. Empa researchers have now succeeded in decoding the movement of hydrogen ions in crystals – a key step towards more efficient energy conversion in the hydrogen industry of tomorrow.

As charge carriers, electrons and ions play the leading role in electrochemical energy storage devices and converters such as batteries and fuel cells. Proton...

Im Focus: A unique data centre for cosmological simulations

Scientists from the Excellence Cluster Universe at the Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität Munich have establised "Cosmowebportal", a unique data centre for cosmological simulations located at the Leibniz Supercomputing Centre (LRZ) of the Bavarian Academy of Sciences. The complete results of a series of large hydrodynamical cosmological simulations are available, with data volumes typically exceeding several hundred terabytes. Scientists worldwide can interactively explore these complex simulations via a web interface and directly access the results.

With current telescopes, scientists can observe our Universe’s galaxies and galaxy clusters and their distribution along an invisible cosmic web. From the...

Im Focus: Scientists develop molecular thermometer for contactless measurement using infrared light

Temperature measurements possible even on the smallest scale / Molecular ruby for use in material sciences, biology, and medicine

Chemists at Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz (JGU) in cooperation with researchers of the German Federal Institute for Materials Research and Testing (BAM)...

Im Focus: Optoelectronic Inline Measurement – Accurate to the Nanometer

Germany counts high-precision manufacturing processes among its advantages as a location. It’s not just the aerospace and automotive industries that require almost waste-free, high-precision manufacturing to provide an efficient way of testing the shape and orientation tolerances of products. Since current inline measurement technology not yet provides the required accuracy, the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT is collaborating with four renowned industry partners in the INSPIRE project to develop inline sensors with a new accuracy class. Funded by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF), the project is scheduled to run until the end of 2019.

New Manufacturing Technologies for New Products

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Plants are networkers

19.06.2017 | Event News

Digital Survival Training for Executives

13.06.2017 | Event News

Global Learning Council Summit 2017

13.06.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Hubble captures massive dead disk galaxy that challenges theories of galaxy evolution

22.06.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

New femto-camera with quadrillion fractions of a second resolution

22.06.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

Rice U. chemists create 3-D printed graphene foam

22.06.2017 | Materials Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>