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Improving lithography pattern fidelity and line-edge roughness by reducing laser speckle

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7 Author(s)
Kritsun, Oleg ; Advanced Micro Devices, One AMD Place, Sunnyvale, California ; Lalovic, Ivan ; Rokitski, Slava ; Partlo, Bill
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In this article the authors discuss the impact of coherence, or laser speckle, of current generation 193 nm argon fluoride (ArF) excimer sources on lithographic patterning. They report a new metrology capability to characterize single-pulse speckle patterns at the exit of the laser aperture and quantify the speckle dependence on time integral square (TIS) pulse duration for different system configurations. The authors performed lithographic exposures on high-numerical-aperture immersion and dry ArF systems as a function of source pulse duration and have quantified the speckle impacts on measured photoresist line-edge roughness (LER) and linewidth roughness (LWR) using immersion and dry lithography processes. Measurements were obtained for multiple feature sizes, pitches, and illumination modes using both static and scanning exposures. They have compared the measured LWR due to laser speckle to results of a line-roughness image model, which accounts for the LER, LWR, and critical dimension uniformity due to the effective dose variation from laser speckle. Finally, the authors present measurements that demonstrate the proportionality between laser speckle contrast and the inverse root of the TIS pulse duration and find that the lithographic LWR exhibits a similar relationship with pulse duration.

Published in:

Journal of Vacuum Science & Technology B: Microelectronics and Nanometer Structures  (Volume:26 ,  Issue: 6 )

Date of Publication:

Nov 2008

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