Where Advanced Lithography Begins

The PROLITH X4.1 lithography simulation tool uses advanced models to quickly and accurately simulate how pattern will print on the wafer. This computational lithography tool is used by IC chip, LED and MEMS manufacturers, stepper companies, track companies, mask manufacturers, material providers and research consortia to cost-effectively evaluate EUV, double patterning and other advanced lithography technologies. As a critically important lithography modeling tool for all patterning processes, the PROLITH X4.1 lithography simulation tool helps lithographers expand their areas of research while significantly reducing the time required to identify workable lithography solutions.

PROLITH X4.1 includes many new features for investigating different lithography technologies and issues, such as improved complex wafer topography capabilities and chemically amplified photoresist modeling enhancements. It builds on the capabilities provided in PROLITH X4.0 related to EUV simulations, metrology measurements and optical proximity correction (OPC). The PROLITH X4.1 lithography simulation tool is available as an upgrade to the industry-leading PROLITH computational lithography platform, providing extendibility to lithography researchers’ existing capital investment.


Advanced Lithography Technologies: When developing lithography processes for 2Xnm and below design nodes, researchers need to evaluate EUV lithography, double patterning lithography and creative single patterning lithography technologies. They must understand how pattern printing is affected by lithography variables, such as mask sets, stepper parameters and resist materials. The traditional method of evaluating these lithography technologies – printing hundreds of test wafers using experimental materials and prototype process equipment – would be complex, expensive, and time consuming. PROLITH X4.1 acts as a lithography simulation tool, providing researchers with an affordable means for modeling different lithography technologies and reducing the development time for their most advanced devices.

EUV Lithography: The PROLITH X4.1 lithography simulation tool includes advanced stochastic and photoelectron models that quickly and accurately predict pattern printing for EUV lithography. Using the PROLITH photolithography simulation tool, researchers have an affordable means to explore EUV lithography and the many variables and issues associated with the technology. One such issue is line edge roughness (LER), which can cause CD uniformity problems that negatively impact device yield and performance. Advanced photolithography simulations in PROLITH version X4.1 help researchers accurately predict LER and cost-effectively explore potential solutions for minimizing LER. Another EUV lithography issue is the long-range flare effects that affect the current generation of EUV lithography equipment. PROLITH X4.1 lithography simulation tool allows users to specify various flare models to efficiently calculate flare impact.

Wafer Topography: Wafer topography is an important consideration when implementing double patterning processes in the lithography cell. The first-pass resist patterns in DPL contort the imaging materials coated over them, resulting in non-planar resist surfaces for second-pass patterning. The PROLITH X4.1 microlithography simulation tool includes enhanced wafer topography models and improved ease-of-use for the set-up of non-planar resist profiles. These enable lithographers to more accurately predict the outcome of DPL processes and allow the simulation of next-generation non-planar devices like FinFETS and other non-planar, real-world wafer stacks (e.g. STI layers, implant layers, damascene structures). The PROLITH X4.1 lithography simulation tool also introduces new metrics for calculating reflectivity in the presence of wafer topography. This metric can be useful in film-stack optimization for lithography processes.

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The Users Only site houses the PROLITH technical papers collection, a knowledge base that comprises over one hundred technical papers representing more than 20 years of advanced lithography research and development. The site is also used for product downloads.

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