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Run by run advanced process control of metal sputter deposition

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4 Author(s)
Smith, T.H. ; Microsystems Technol. Lab., MIT, Cambridge, MA, USA ; Boning, D.S. ; Stefani, J. ; Butler, Stephanie Watts

Metal sputter deposition processes for semiconductor manufacturing are characterized by a decrease in deposition rate from run to run as the sputter target degrades. The goal is to maintain a desired deposition thickness from wafer to wafer and lot to lot. Run by run (RbR) model-based process control (MBPC) has been applied to metal sputter deposition processes at Texas Instruments. RbR MBPC, based on the exponentially weighted moving-average filter, provides the ability to track and compensate for process drifts without a priori assumptions on their magnitude or consistency (from sputter target to sputter target or collimator to collimator). The application of RbR MBPC resulted in an improved Cpk of 44% for aluminum sputter deposition, while reducing the number of lot-based monitor wafers by a factor of three. The application of RbR MBPC to the titanium sputter deposition process eliminated look-ahead test runs and reduced the number of monitor wafers by a factor of three. At the same time, Cpk was improved by 10% with the application of RbR MBPC

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Semiconductor Manufacturing, IEEE Transactions on  (Volume:11 ,  Issue: 2 )