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A Novel 3-D Dynamic Cellular Automata Model for Photoresist-Etching Process Simulation

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4 Author(s)
Zai-Fa Zhou ; Minist. of Educ., Southeast Univ., Nanjing ; Qing-An Huang ; Wei-Hua Li ; Wei Lu

A novel three-dimensional (3-D) dynamic cellular automata (CA) model is presented for a photoresist-etching process simulation (photoresist-dissolution simulation and development simulation). In the 3-D dynamic CA model, the Moore neighborhood is adopted, and the boundary cells are only processed by using a boundary cell array, a corresponding linked list of pointers to the boundary cells, and a state flag to indicate the relations between the cells and the etching boundary. A time-compensation method is also introduced to speed up the photoresist-etching simulation. Therefore, the simulation speed is greatly increased compared with that of the static 3-D CA model, and the preferential etch in different directions reported in cell-removal models is significantly reduced. The 3-D dynamic CA model was successfully tested using some well-known etch-rate distribution test functions and has been shown to be stable, accurate, and fast. Exposure simulation, post-exposure bake simulation, and photoresist-etching simulation have been successfully integrated together to further study the effectiveness of the 3-D dynamic CA model. Simulation results show an agreement with available experimental results

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Computer-Aided Design of Integrated Circuits and Systems, IEEE Transactions on  (Volume:26 ,  Issue: 1 )