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The high optical density of the conventional positive resist in the deep UV region (190 nm to 300 nm) prevents its use in the fabrication of high contrast patterns. The photobleachable deep UV resist composed of a 1,3‐dicarbonyl‐2‐diazo compound as the alkaline dissolution inhibitor and an alkaline‐soluble styrene polymer as the resin matrix, which we developed, is one promising approach to resolve these problems. Using this resist, high contrast 0.5 μm patterns were obtained with a KrF excimer laser stepper. In this paper, we have applied photoacid generators to such photobleachable resists. The photoacid generator used was triphenylsulfonium hexafluoroarsenate, and it greatly enhanced the sensitivity and contrast of the resist. The decomposition of diazo compound in the resist was significantly enhanced (and the dissolution characteristics improved) in the presence of the onium salt. This novel positive resist utilizing chemical amplification more than meets the requirements for KrF excimer laser lithography.