SAN JOSE, Calif. - As expected, KLA-Tencor Inc. today (June 30) rolled out its next-generation reticle inspection tool for 90-nm designs and below.
The new TeraScan deep ultraviolet (DUV) reticle inspection system had been expected for weeks (see June 20 story ). The new TeraScan detects classical defects as small as 80-nm and critical-dimension (CD) defects as small as 50-nm on photomasks.
San Jose-based KLA-Tencor has shipped the first TeraScan beta systems, "including one to a leading microprocessor manufacturer and one to a leading mask development center." Sources believe that Intel Corp. has one of the beta tools, while the other one is located at the Advanced Mask Technology Center (AMTC), a Dresden, Germany-based photomask venture between Advanced Micro Devices, Infineon, and DuPont Photomasks.
Based on its previous-generation TeraStar platform, the new TeraScan has a DUV image acquisition system to extend the benchmark performance below the 90-nm node. It has demonstrated the capability to inspect numerous reticle types, including chrome-on-glass, embedded phase shift, and alternating phase shift, at both 248-nm and 193-nm wavelengths.
Lance Glasser, vice president and general manager of KLA- Tencor's Reticle and Photomask Inspection Division, said the tool can also extend down to the 65-nm device generation.