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Second generation proximity x-ray lithography (PXL-II), which uses shorter incident x-ray wavelengths and resist materials, is expected to be a candidate for next generation lithography. In the PXL-II technique, the x-ray wavelength absorbed in the resist becomes shorter, but degradation of the pattern quality due to secondary electron blur has not been sufficiently evaluated. In this article, we present our investigation of the secondary electron blur’s suppression in Br-containing resist using a lithographic simulator and a Monte Carlo simulator for electron scattering. By introducing the Br element into resist materials, the electron stopping power improves. In addition, secondary electron blur is suppressed in regions with wavelengths shorter than that of the Br absorption edge. In order to evaluate pattern resolution, the image contrast of the lateral absorbed image in the resist is defined. We found that image contrast is improved in Br-containing resist for the wavelength range down to about 4.5 Å, which is suitable for PXL-II. We also show that it should be possible to extend PXL-II for resolutions of less than 40 nm at a narrower gap. © 2002 American Vacuum Society.
Journal of Vacuum Science & Technology B: Microelectronics and Nanometer Structures (Volume:20 , Issue: 6 )
Date of Publication: Nov 2002