KLA-Tencor's New Automated Lithography Simulation Solution Accelerates Sub-0.13-Micron Design Rule Development
Combined capabilities of PROLITH 7.0 and Klarity ProDATA AutoTune™ take the guesswork out of lithography simulation modeling

SAN JOSE, Calif., Feb. 20, 2001 - KLA-Tencor (Nasdaq: KLAC) today introduced two new software products that, when combined with the company's 8200 series CD SEM tools, enable customers to develop and optimize new lithography processes with greater accuracy, speed and ease. PROLITH 7.0 enables advanced sub-wavelength lithography product designs by simulating the complete optical lithography process. It also speeds design rule development by confirming design manufacturability. KLA-Tencor's new AutoTuneÃ? module for its Klarity ProDATA 1.2 analysis software automatically calibrates PROLITH's lithography simulation parameters to provide the best match between simulation results and actual CD SEM measurements. As a result, the slow and laborious challenge of manually adjusting simulation parameters based on experimental CD data is eliminated, greatly accelerating the development of next-generation devices.

"Lithography simulation is critical to ASML for developing next-generation exposure tools," stated Dr. Steve Hansen, senior imaging scientist at ASML. "The AutoTune module is a big step forward in matching PROLITH simulations to actual CD measurement data. Calibrated lithography models improve simulation accuracy to get us our answers faster."

Sub-wavelength lithography has become widely adopted for use in the development of next-generation integrated circuits (ICs). This process enables features to be printed onto the wafer that are significantly smaller than the wavelength of light used in the stepper or scanner. Chipmakers are faced with a number of manufacturing challenges, however, when implementing sub-wavelength lithography. These challenges include reduced process windows, lower tolerance of reticle CD errors, aggressive resolution enhancement techniques, new resist models and a number of other process parameters that must be fully understood in order to control the lithography process. Accurate lithography simulation is critical in helping lithography engineers understand these parameters and determine the viability of new lithography processes.

About KLA-Tencor: KLA-Tencor is the world leader in yield management and process control solutions for semiconductor manufacturing and related industries. Headquartered in San Jose, Calif., the company has sales and service offices around the world. An S&P 500 company, KLA-Tencor is traded on the Nasdaq National Market under the symbol KLAC.

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