– Specialist optics and metrology firm Zygo Corp. (Middlefield, Conn.) has been
awarded a $2 million order to produce advanced extreme ultraviolet (EUV) optics
from "a major semiconductor company."
of order will take nearly two years and is likely to be for use in the development
of EUV lithographic process technologies.
order is associated a microexposure tool research project called MET-5 being conducted
by Sematech at the College of Nanoscale Science and Engineering (CNSE) at the
University of Albany in New York State, Zygo said. The upgraded optics will
help researchers achieve line widths of less than 16-nm in support of process
development out to the year 2025, Zygo said.
order is a follow on to a $9 million order given to Zygo by CNSE and Sematech
to develop optics for MET-5 that was announced in October 2011. This is in
support of EUV resist and EUV mask developments. The development and production
of the EUV mirror system and for the follow on are both expected to take 22 months
and both will be carried out by Zygo's extreme precision optics (EPO) operation
in Richmond, California.
is not clear why the follow-on order has come from "a major semiconductor
company" rather than through CNSE or Sematech. IBM, Intel, Globalfoundries
Samsung, TSMC and Toshiba, are all working at CNSE. However Intel or TSMC are
the likeliest candidates to be the major semiconductor company to have ordered
EUV optics from Zygo.
is the world leader in terms of the miniaturization of manufacturing processes
and is already down at 22-nm minimum geometries – which it makes using conventional optical lithography – while TSMC is known to have already taken delivery
of a pre-production EUV lithography machine from ASML Holding NV (Veldhoven,
The Netherlands) and so may be accelerating its own EUV process development. However, IBM is a leader in the Common Platform Alliance that also includes Samsung and Globlfoundries.
be entrusted with this follow-on order for some of the finest EUV optics ever
made is testimony to 20 years of accomplishment in this field," said Marc
Tricard, executive director of business development at Zygo, in a statement.
Related links and articles:
IMEC offers 14-nm dev kit, test chip to follow 2H12
Samsung calls for more EUV support
CNSE and partners share research results at SPIE