Posted: March 30, 2010

World's Biggest Semiconductor Foundry Orders Carl Zeiss Closed Loop Mask Repair and Verification Solution for 32nm Node

(Nanowerk News) The World biggest semiconductor foundry from Taiwan has placed a combined order for the Mask Defect Repair System MeRiT® HR 32 and the Aerial Image Measurement System AIMS™ 32-193i from Carl Zeiss to prepare for the production of next generation high-end photomasks.
“As one of the most advanced foundries our customer has to invest strategically to ensure zero defect photomask production for the upcoming 32 and 22nm nodes. For the introduction of the next technology nodes the new generation of AIMS and MeRiT systems are essential components to ensure manufacturing of high-quality photomasks with zero-defects.” explains Dr. Oliver Kienzle, Managing Director of SMS Division of Carl Zeiss SMT.
AIMS 32-193i and MeRiT HR 32 enable the production of zero-defect photomasks at 32nm node and beyond.
AIMS 32-193i and MeRiT HR 32 enable the production of zero-defect photomasks at 32nm node and beyond.
Last year Carl Zeiss launched the mask qualification and repair systems for the 32nm node. “AIMS and MeRiT are well established in the market as a closed-loop solution for defect free masks, especially at 65nm and 45nm node. Thanks to the close cooperation with key customers we could develop further advanced technology to derive strong next generation systems.” Kienzle continues. He highlights that customers especially appreciate the fully flexible illumination scheme of the AIMS 32-193i and the new high-stability platform concept of the MeRiT HR 32 system extendible to future technologies including EUV.
The e-beam based mask repair system MeRiT HR32 employs two strategies in parallel to meet the demands of 32 nm lithography. The required repair quality in terms of resolution and placement accuracy is addressed by a novel e-beam platform that includes an actively controlled mini-environment. This feature provides a high level of thermal and mechanical stability. The enhanced e-beam process assisted by a flexible, high-capability process gas supply system improves etch stability and minimum repair size. Furthermore it enables new and challenging mask technologies like OMOG-type and EUV masks. The MeRiT technology builds a closed-loop solution together with AIMS™ for defect repair and repair verification. The new AIMS 32-193i enables accurate emulation of 32nm lithography techniques such as Double Patterning Technology, Source Mask Optimization and Computational Lithography.
Based on the broad expertise of Carl Zeiss with scanner lens technologies the system ensures scanner-like imaging performance by the new LITO® grade optics. An advanced illumination system allows the emulation of all kinds of 193nm illumination settings. For the first time in AIMS history variable transmission in the illumination pupil is now available with AIMS 32-193i.
Source: Carl Zeiss (press release)
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