In this paper, the authors present the results of an investigation of the dependence of mask absorber thickness on the extreme ultraviolet lithography (EUVL) and suggest a new mask structure to minimize shadowing effects. For this purpose, several patterned masks with various TaN absorber thicknesses are fabricated using in-house Ru-capped EUVL mask blanks. According to the simulation using practical refractive indices, which are obtained at EUV wavelengths, the absorber thickness can be reduced to that of out-of-phase (ΔΦ=180°) ranges without loss of image contrast and normalized image log slope. Thickness to meet out-of-phase in real mask can be obtained by comparing field spectrum intensity ratio using the EUV coherent scattering microscopy (CSM). 52.4 nm in thickness is close to ΔΦ=180° for TaN absorber since it shows the highest 1st/0th order intensity ratio as well as the best resolution in the microfield exposure tool (MET) test. When we apply 40-nm-thick TaN instead of 80-nm-thick TaN, the amounts of H-V bias reduction in wafer scale correspond to 80% (2.46–0.48 nm) by CSM and 70% (2.23–0.65 nm) by MET test results. Considering the fact that H-V bias in the MET is similar with that of simulation using the resist model, the degree of H-V bias in the alpha demo tool (ADT) is supposed to be much higher than that of MET due to its higher incident angle (θ=6°). Our final goal is to develop a thin absorber EUVL mask which has a low H-V bias, high EUV printability and DUV contrast, and sufficient optical density at the border. To achieve this, blind layer treatment and integra- - tion with anti-reflective coating layer are in progress.