SAN FRANCISCO—Brion Technologies, a division of lithography leader ASML Holding NV, rolled out a new software tool designed to provide accurate predictive modeling specifically for ASML extreme ultraviolet (EUV) lithography scanners at the Bacus photomask symposium in Monterey, Calif.
Brion (Santa Clara, Calif.) said the accurate EUV modeling in its Tachyon NXE will reduce the development time and cost to produce chips on EUV lithography systems. The software package seamlessly integrates with existing Tachyon products to enable the simulation of the EUV lithography process, the company said.
In developing Tachyon NXE, Brion incorporated ASML Twinscan NXE:3100 scanner characteristics, models, and data to accurately describe the optical performance of the system, according to the company. By simulating the behavior of the new scanner in software, this Tachyon NXE model can predict and correct NXE-specific effects before the start of chip production, helping to decrease EUV mask re-spins and shorten the learning cycles during final mask development, according to Brion.
The Optical Proximity Correction (Tachyon OPC+) and Lithography Manufacturability Check (Tachyon LMC) applications from Brion can now incorporate the new software model of ASML’s EUV pre-production scanners, six of which will ship before mid-2011, Brion said. These applications have been optimized for accuracy, file size and run-time as required by EUV, Brion said.
Brion said it has demonstrated the capability to perform full field EUV mask data correction in less than eight hours on a single Tachyon system multiple DRAM test cases.
“Tachyon NXE is the result of a multi-year investment by ASML and Brion to accurately model the performance of NXE scanners,” said Jim Koonmen, general manager of Brion, in a statement. “The industry transition to EUV will require a significant learning curve. ASML and Brion are uniquely positioned to help reduce the duration and cost of that curve through Tachyon NXE.”
Semiconductor industry researchers have been working for years to develop EUV lithography to replace 193-nm optical lithography. The technology was originally expected to be in productions by now, but due to technical hurdles it has been repeatedly pushed out. Most now believe EUV will not be in production until the 22-nm node, if not later.
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