SUNY NanoCollege expands photoresist research with new partnership

(Nanowerk News) The SUNY College of Nanoscale Science and Engineering (CNSE) announced that Korea-based Kumho Petrochemical, Ltd. (Kumho), a global leader in specialty chemicals, has signed an evaluative testing agreement with CNSE that will provide Kumho with access to the CNSE Advanced Resist Center (C-ARC) and its suite of leading-edge equipment, known as tools, to benchmark photoresists for the development of next-generation computer chips.
“SUNY CNSE is excited to welcome Kumho Petrochemical as a joint development partner at the CNSE Advanced Resist Center where this trailblazing company will be able to utilize cutting-edge tools and facilities to gain a competitive advantage in the photoresist sector,” said CNSE Executive Vice President of Innovation and Technology and Vice President for Research Dr. Michael Liehr. “Led by the vision of Governor Andrew Cuomo, New York State’s high-tech research and development ecosystem is enabling companies like Kumho to further research and develop their advanced products that will drive semiconductor-based innovations for years to come. Partnerships such as this one only serve to strengthen New York as the global hub for high-tech progress.”
The agreement provides Kumho access to CNSE’s vast infrastructure to characterize and develop novel, advanced photolithographic materials and processes, with a focus on immersion lithography applications. Lithography is the process by which light is used to transfer a pattern onto a silicon disk, known as a wafer, and a light-sensitive “photoresist” is deployed to either block or allow a chemical reaction in certain locations in order to leave behind the building blocks of a computer chip. Immersion lithography is a method by which a liquid is used between the light-emitting lens and the wafer to enhance resolution, thereby allowing the fabrication of features below 45 nm in size. This is important for fabricating faster and more energy efficient computer chips.
To further gather data and improve the efficacy of their photoresists, Kumho will obtain tool time access inside some of the most advanced cleanroom facilities in the world. This work will be supported by CNSE’s globally recognized engineering team who will supply wafers and other critical materials, and will process materials supplied by Kumho.
“Kumho Petrochemical is thrilled to work with the SUNY College of Nanoscale Science and Engineering Advanced Resist Center to allow our leading company to focus on creating photoresists that will play a major role in the creation of computer chips with ever-finer features,” said Dr. Hyansang Joo, Kumho Petrochemical Research and Development Senior Manager. “Utilizing the NanoCollege’s world-class menu of tools, Kumho will be able to obtain detailed data on how well our photoresists can meet the needs of our customers around the world so that we will be able to bring the results of our latest research more efficiently to market.”
The C-ARC offers unmatched fabrication and testing capabilities through its top tier line of tools, including an Advanced Immersion tool, which allows for the imaging of chip patterns down to 32 nm in size; an Advanced Coat Track, which applies photoresist to the wafers under extreme process control conditions; and metrology tools that include a Critical Dimension-Scanning Electron Microscope (CD-SEM), Vertical Scanning Electron Microscope (VSEM), and Cross-Section SEM to measure the developed wafer patterns; all of which Kumho will be able to utilize.
This effort builds upon CNSE and Kumho’s current collaborations, such as joint research which will be presented at SPIE Advanced Lithography 2014, the world’s leading lithography forum. This agreement also complements Kumho’s CNSE-based efforts as a member of SEMATECH’s Resist Materials and Development Center (RMDC), which is located at the NanoCollege and enables the development of materials for 22 nm patterning and beyond.
The CNSE-Kumho partnership further solidifies the New-York as the global epicenter for the research, development, and commercialization of technologies and materials that are driving innovation across the world.
Source: CNSE
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