Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Using water as a lens to shrink chip dimensions

01.03.2004


Thanks in part to highly accurate measurements made by National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) researchers, semiconductor manufacturers will be able to pursue a new production method that will enable them to produce new generations of computer chips using existing equipment---saving the industry hundreds of millions of dollars.



Creating ever more powerful computer chips relies on being able to increasingly miniaturize the features on those chips. Industry had thought it might be nearing the end of the useful life of equipment that creates features using 193 nanometer (nm) wavelength light.

However, a new method called immersion lithography uses a thin layer of water like a lens to shorten the effective wavelengths of ultraviolet light used in patterning semiconductor chips. The method relies on the fact that light travels slower through water than air. The frequency of the light remains the same, so the distance between peaks (the wavelength) must shorten to compensate.


The method should enable manufacturers to use 193 nm equipment to create circuit lines and other features at least as small as 45 nm. Such a breakthrough allows manufacturers to create much more powerful chips while getting more life out of their current fabrication equipment, which can cost around $20 million per tool.

The industry began to take immersion lithography seriously about a year ago. With the support of International SEMATECH, the semiconductor industry’s R&D consortium, NIST scientists made highly accurate measurements of a property called refractive index, a measure of how much ultraviolet light at a wavelength of 193 nm bends when it moves from air to water. This new data helped enable the semiconductor industry to design immersion lithography systems.

NIST researchers described key results of their work at the International Society for Optical Engineering’s Microlithography 2004 conference held Feb. 23-28 in Santa Clara, Calif.

The researchers also are working with industry on new immersion fluids for 157 nm wavelength chipmaking tools, so that this equipment can produce features of 32 nm or below.

Scott Nance | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.nist.gov/

More articles from Process Engineering:

nachricht Intelligent wheelchairs, predictive prostheses
20.12.2017 | Fraunhofer-Institut für Produktionstechnik und Automatisierung IPA

nachricht Jelly with memory – predicting the leveling of com-mercial paints
15.12.2017 | Fraunhofer-Institut für Produktionstechnik und Automatisierung IPA

All articles from Process Engineering >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

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

Im Focus: Demonstration of a single molecule piezoelectric effect

Breakthrough provides a new concept of the design of molecular motors, sensors and electricity generators at nanoscale

Researchers from the Institute of Organic Chemistry and Biochemistry of the CAS (IOCB Prague), Institute of Physics of the CAS (IP CAS) and Palacký University...

Im Focus: Hybrid optics bring color imaging using ultrathin metalenses into focus

For photographers and scientists, lenses are lifesavers. They reflect and refract light, making possible the imaging systems that drive discovery through the microscope and preserve history through cameras.

But today's glass-based lenses are bulky and resist miniaturization. Next-generation technologies, such as ultrathin cameras or tiny microscopes, require...

Im Focus: Stem cell divisions in the adult brain seen for the first time

Scientists from the University of Zurich have succeeded for the first time in tracking individual stem cells and their neuronal progeny over months within the intact adult brain. This study sheds light on how new neurons are produced throughout life.

The generation of new nerve cells was once thought to taper off at the end of embryonic development. However, recent research has shown that the adult brain...

Im Focus: Interference as a new method for cooling quantum devices

Theoretical physicists propose to use negative interference to control heat flow in quantum devices. Study published in Physical Review Letters

Quantum computer parts are sensitive and need to be cooled to very low temperatures. Their tiny size makes them particularly susceptible to a temperature...

Im Focus: Autonomous 3D scanner supports individual manufacturing processes

Let’s say the armrest is broken in your vintage car. As things stand, you would need a lot of luck and persistence to find the right spare part. But in the world of Industrie 4.0 and production with batch sizes of one, you can simply scan the armrest and print it out. This is made possible by the first ever 3D scanner capable of working autonomously and in real time. The autonomous scanning system will be on display at the Hannover Messe Preview on February 6 and at the Hannover Messe proper from April 23 to 27, 2018 (Hall 6, Booth A30).

Part of the charm of vintage cars is that they stopped making them long ago, so it is special when you do see one out on the roads. If something breaks or...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

2nd International Conference on High Temperature Shape Memory Alloys (HTSMAs)

15.02.2018 | Event News

Aachen DC Grid Summit 2018

13.02.2018 | Event News

How Global Climate Policy Can Learn from the Energy Transition

12.02.2018 | Event News

 
Latest News

Fingerprints of quantum entanglement

16.02.2018 | Information Technology

'Living bandages': NUST MISIS scientists develop biocompatible anti-burn nanofibers

16.02.2018 | Health and Medicine

Hubble sees Neptune's mysterious shrinking storm

16.02.2018 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>