Nikon Patents

Nikon Corporation manufactures and sells semiconductor and FPD lithography equipment, digital cameras, lenses and accessories, and microscopes and other measuring instruments.

Nikon Patents by Type

  • Nikon Patents Granted: Nikon patents that have been granted by the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO).
  • Nikon Patent Applications: Nikon patent applications that are pending before the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO).
  • Patent number: 10102997
    Abstract: Disclosed herein are a high-voltage generator for an x-ray source, an x-ray gun, an electron beam apparatus, a rotary vacuum seal, a target assembly for an x-ray source, a rotary x-ray emission target, and an x-ray source. These various aspects may separately and/or together enable the construction of an x-ray source which can operate at energies of up to 500 kV and beyond, which is suitable for use in commercial and research x-ray applications such as computerized tomography. In particular, the high-voltage generator includes a shield electrode electrically connected intermediate of a first voltage multiplier and a second voltage multiplier. The electron beam apparatus includes control photodetectors and photo emitters having a transparent conductive shield arranged therebetween. The rotary vacuum seal includes a pumpable chamber at a position intermediate between high-pressure and low-pressure ends of a bore for a rotating shaft.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 27, 2017
    Date of Patent: October 16, 2018
    Assignee: NIKON METROLOGY NV
    Inventor: Roger Hadland
  • Patent number: 10101442
    Abstract: A distance measuring apparatus includes: a light-transmitting unit that transmits signal light from a light source toward a target object; a light-receiving unit that has a light-receiving element and receives the signal light from the target object on an optical axis different from that of the light-transmitting unit; a distance measuring unit that measures a distance to the target object based on propagation time from light transmission to light reception of the signal light; and a compensating unit that, while either optical path of an optical path from the light-transmitting unit to the light-receiving unit or an optical path from the target object to the light-receiving element is fixed, compensates an optical path of the signal light by displacing the other optical path at the light-transmitting unit or the light-receiving unit.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 25, 2015
    Date of Patent: October 16, 2018
    Assignee: NIKON VISION CO., LTD.
    Inventors: Hitoshi Ohmuro, Takao Takizawa, Yosuke Miyazaki
  • Patent number: 10101666
    Abstract: An illumination optical apparatus guides exposure light emitted from an exposure light source, to an illumination target object. The illumination optical apparatus has a plurality of spatial light modulation members arranged in an array form, and each spatial light modulation member is so configured that a plurality of reflecting optical elements each including a movable reflecting surface are arranged in an array form. At least one of the spatial light modulation members is arranged in an optical path of the light emitted from the light source.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 19, 2015
    Date of Patent: October 16, 2018
    Assignee: NIKON CORPORATION
    Inventor: Hiroyuki Hirota
  • Patent number: 10101568
    Abstract: A zoom lens includes, in order from the object side: a first lens group (G1) having positive refractive power, a second lens group (G2) having negative refractive power, a third lens group (G3) having positive refractive power, and a fourth lens group (G4) having positive refractive power. Upon zooming from the wide angle end state to the telephoto end state, the interval between each lens group changes and the fourth lens group (G4) moves to the image side after having once moved to the object side. The third lens group (G3) has, in order from the object side, a positive lens, a positive lens, and a negative lens. The zoom lens satisfies the following conditional expression: 2.50<TLt/(fw*ft)1/2<3.30, where TLt is the total length of the zoom lens in the telephoto state, fw is the focal distance of the total zoom lens system in the wide angle state, and ft is the focal distance of the total zoom lens system in the telephoto state.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 26, 2014
    Date of Patent: October 16, 2018
    Assignee: Nikon Corporation
    Inventor: Keiichi Nakamura
  • Patent number: 10100939
    Abstract: A valve disposed at a flow path includes: a substrate having a first surface in which a hole having an opening section is formed; and a diaphragm member fixed to at least part of a wall surface of the hole and in which at least a central portion has a thin film shape, wherein a flow of a fluid in the flow path is controlled by deforming the diaphragm member.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 3, 2016
    Date of Patent: October 16, 2018
    Assignees: THE UNIVERSITY OF TOKYO, NIKON CORPORATION
    Inventors: Takanori Ichiki, Masashi Kobayashi, Shotaro Terane, Kuno Suzuki
  • Patent number: 10101673
    Abstract: A drive unit drives a wafer stage in a Y-axis direction based on a measurement value of an encoder that measures position information of the wafer stage in the Y-axis direction and based on information on the flatness of a scale that is measured by the encoder. In this case, the drive unit can drive the wafer stage in a predetermined direction based on a measurement value after correction in which a measurement error caused by the flatness of the scale included in the measurement value of the encoder is corrected based on the information on the flatness of the scale. Accordingly, the wafer stage can be driven with high accuracy in a predetermined direction using the encoder, without being affected by the unevenness of the scale.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 5, 2014
    Date of Patent: October 16, 2018
    Assignee: NIKON CORPORATION
    Inventor: Yuichi Shibazaki
  • Publication number: 20180292310
    Abstract: A polarization property image measurement device includes: a first radiation unit that radiates light beams in different polarization conditions onto a target object after subjecting the light beams to intensity modulation at frequencies different from one another; a light receiving unit including first photoelectric conversion units that photoelectrically convert the light beams having been radiated from the first radiation unit and scattered at the target object in correspondence to each of the different polarization conditions, and second photoelectric conversion units that photoelectrically convert visible light from the target object; and a processor that detects signals individually output from the first photoelectric conversion units at the different frequencies and differentiates each signal from other signals so as to determine an origin of the signal as one of the light beams; and creates an image of the target object based upon signals individually output from the second photoelectric conversion un
    Type: Application
    Filed: June 8, 2018
    Publication date: October 11, 2018
    Applicant: NIKON CORPORATION
    Inventors: Takanori KOJIMA, Satoru Odate, Toru Takagi
  • Publication number: 20180292759
    Abstract: A substrate holding apparatus which can prevent a liquid from entering into a rear surface side of a substrate. A substrate holding apparatus is provided with a base material, a first holding portion formed on the base material to hold the substrate, and a second holding portion formed on the base material to hold a plate member by surrounding the circumference of a processing substrate held by the first holding portion. The second holding portion holds the plate member so as to form a second space on the side of the rear surface of the plate member. On the rear surface of the plate member, an absorbing member is arranged to absorb the liquid entered from a gap between the substrate held by the first holding portion and the plate member held by the second holding portion.
    Type: Application
    Filed: June 13, 2018
    Publication date: October 11, 2018
    Applicant: NIKON CORPORATION
    Inventors: Hiroyuki Nagasaka, Makoto Shibuta, Katsushi Nakano, Yuichi Yoshida, Hiroaki Takaiwa
  • Publication number: 20180293725
    Abstract: A defect detection apparatus includes a defect detection unit and a calculation unit. The defect detection unit detects a defect that appears on an external appearance of a structure through imaging processing from external appearance image data that is generated by imaging the external appearance of the structure with a surveying instrument. The calculation unit calculates defect data relating to the defect detected by the defect detection unit by using coordinate data that is correlated with the external appearance image data.
    Type: Application
    Filed: June 11, 2018
    Publication date: October 11, 2018
    Applicant: NIKON-TRIMBLE CO., LTD.
    Inventor: Yuichi OHSHIMA
  • Publication number: 20180295274
    Abstract: An image-capturing apparatus includes: an image sensor and a processor. The processor controls a plurality of pixels included in a first region of the image sensor to accumulate the charges with the light from a subject for a first accumulation time length, and controls a plurality of pixels included in a second region of the image sensor to accumulate the charges with the light from the subject for a second accumulation time length, the second region being different from the first region; and calculates at least one of a movement distance and a speed of a measurement target included in the subject, based on a first image obtained from a first pixel signal group from the plurality of pixels in the first region and a second image obtained from a second pixel signal group from the plurality of pixels in the second region.
    Type: Application
    Filed: June 14, 2018
    Publication date: October 11, 2018
    Applicant: NIKON CORPORATION
    Inventors: Satoshi NAKAYAMA, Shutaro KATO
  • Publication number: 20180295309
    Abstract: An imaging element comprising: an imaging unit that has: a plurality of groups each including at least one pixel; and a plurality of signal readout units that are each provided to each of the groups and read out a signal from the pixel; and a control unit that controls the signal readout unit in at least one group among the plurality of groups is provided. Each of the plurality of groups may include a plurality of the pixels. The control unit may select at least one group among the plurality of groups and control the signal readout unit by using a control parameter that is different from a control parameter that is used for another group among the plurality of groups.
    Type: Application
    Filed: June 8, 2018
    Publication date: October 11, 2018
    Applicant: NIKON CORPORATION
    Inventors: Takashi KURIYAMA, Hironobu MURATA, Shiro TSUNAI, Tetsuya KONISHI, Masahiro SUZUKI
  • Publication number: 20180294300
    Abstract: An image sensor includes: a semiconductor substrate having a light receiving unit that receives incident light passed through a microlens; and a light shielding unit that blocks a part of the light passed through the microlens and enters the semiconductor substrate. The light receiving unit receives the incident light passed through the microlens, between the microlens and the light shielding unit.
    Type: Application
    Filed: September 26, 2016
    Publication date: October 11, 2018
    Applicant: NIKON CORPORATION
    Inventors: Tomohisa ISHIDA, Yoshiyuki WATANABE
  • Patent number: 10096446
    Abstract: Disclosed herein are a high-voltage generator (120) for an x-ray source, an x-ray gun, an electron beam apparatus, a rotary vacuum seal, a target assembly for an x-ray source, a rotary x-ray emission target (500), and an x-ray source. These various aspects may separately and/or together enable the construction of an x-ray source which can operate at energies of up to 500 kV and beyond, which is suitable for use in commercial and research x-ray applications such as computerized tomography. In particular, the high-voltage generator includes a shield electrode (123a, 123b) electrically connected intermediate of a first voltage multiplier (122a, 122b) and a second voltage multiplier (122b, 122c). The electron beam apparatus includes control photodetectors (202a, 202b—not shown) and photo emitters (201a, 202a) having a transparent conductive shield (203a and 203b, 203c—not shown) arranged therebetween.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 12, 2014
    Date of Patent: October 9, 2018
    Assignee: NIKON METROLOGY NV
    Inventor: Roger Hadland
  • Patent number: 10095012
    Abstract: A zoom lens system comprising, in order from an object side: a first lens group G1 having negative refractive power; and a second lens group G2 having positive refractive power, a distance between the first lens group and the second lens group varying upon zooming from a wide-angle end state to a telephoto end state, the first lens group G1 including, in order from the object side, a first lens component having negative refractive power, a second lens component having negative refractive power, a third lens component having positive refractive power, and a fourth lens component having positive refractive power, thereby providing a downsized zoom lens system having excellent optical performance, an optical apparatus equipped therewith and a method for manufacturing the zoom lens system.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 25, 2015
    Date of Patent: October 9, 2018
    Assignee: Nikon Corporation
    Inventor: Akira Yamagami
  • Patent number: 10093572
    Abstract: A method for manufacturing an SiO2—TiO2 based glass upon a target by a direct method, includes: an ingot growing step of growing an SiO2—TiO2 based glass ingot having a predetermined length on the target by flame hydrolysis by feeding a silicon compound and a titanium compound into an oxyhydrogen flame, wherein the ingot growing step includes: a first step of increasing a ratio of a feed rate of the titanium compound to a feed rate of the silicon compound as the SiO2—TiO2 based glass ingot grows until the ratio reaches a predetermined value; and a second step of gradually growing the SiO2—TiO2 based glass ingot after the ratio has reached the predetermined value in the first stage with keeping the ratio within a predetermined range.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 17, 2015
    Date of Patent: October 9, 2018
    Assignee: NIKON CORPORATION
    Inventor: Toshio Yoshinari
  • Patent number: 10095127
    Abstract: A liquid immersion exposure apparatus includes a liquid immersion member which forms a liquid immersion space on an object disposed opposite to an emitting surface of an optical member. The liquid immersion member includes (i) a first member that has a first liquid supply port and a first opening through which the exposure light is projected, (ii) a second member that has a first liquid recovery port facing downwardly and that is movable with respect to the first member, and (iii) a gas supply port arranged radially outward of the first liquid recovery port with respect to a path of the exposure light. The first liquid recovery port has a plurality of openings disposed in a four-sided shape to surround the first opening of the first member. The second member is movable relative to the first member in a direction perpendicular to an optical axis of the optical member.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 17, 2017
    Date of Patent: October 9, 2018
    Assignee: NIKON CORPORATION
    Inventor: Shinji Sato
  • Patent number: 10095018
    Abstract: An illumination optical system includes: a beam splitter located near a conjugate position of a specimen and configured to split beams from a light source into a plurality of groups of beams having different splitting directions around an optical axis; a beam selector configured to select and transmit one group of beams from the plurality of groups of beams and that is rotatable with respect to the optical axis; and a ½ wavelength plate located near the beam selector and rotatable about the optical axis. The rotation angles of the ½ wavelength plate and of the beam selector about the optical axis are respectively set so that the polarization direction of the beam which has passed through the ½ wavelength plate is perpendicular to the splitting direction of the one group of beams that has been selected by the beam selector and split by the beam splitter.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 9, 2017
    Date of Patent: October 9, 2018
    Assignee: NIKON CORPORATION
    Inventor: Yumiko Ouchi
  • Publication number: 20180288316
    Abstract: An image-capturing device includes: an image sensor that includes an image-capturing area where an image of a subject is captured; a setting unit that sets image-capturing conditions to be applied to the image-capturing area; a selection unit that selects pixels to be used for interpolation from pixels present in the image-capturing area; and a generation unit that generates an image of the subject captured in the image-capturing area with signals generated through interpolation executed by using signals output from the pixels selected by the selection unit, wherein: the selection unit makes a change in selection of at least some of the pixels to be selected depending upon the image-capturing conditions set by the setting unit.
    Type: Application
    Filed: September 26, 2016
    Publication date: October 4, 2018
    Applicant: NIKON CORPORATION
    Inventors: Takashi SHIONOYA, Toshiyuki KANBARA, Naoki SEKIGUCHI
  • Publication number: 20180288404
    Abstract: A technique that only and simply projects a video of a specific region on a body tissue is insufficient in some cases as an assistance technique for users in, for example, surgeries and pathological examinations. An image processing system includes an infrared light irradiating apparatus, an optical detector, a control apparatus, a display apparatus, and a projecting apparatus. The infrared light irradiating apparatus is configured to irradiate a biological tissue with infrared light. The optical detector is configured to detect light radiated from the biological tissue irradiated with the infrared light. The control apparatus is configured to create an image of the biological tissue using a detection result by the optical detector. The display apparatus is configured to display the created image. The projecting apparatus is configured to irradiate the biological tissue with first light.
    Type: Application
    Filed: March 9, 2018
    Publication date: October 4, 2018
    Applicants: NATIONAL INSTITUTE OF ADVANCED INDUSTRIAL SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY, NIKON CORPORATION
    Inventors: Yuzuru IKEHARA, Susumu Makinouchi, Tetsuro Ishikawa
  • Publication number: 20180288347
    Abstract: An image sensor includes: a readout circuit that reads out a signal to a signal line, the signal being generated by an electric charge resulting from a photoelectric conversion; a storage circuit including an analog/digital converter that converts a first voltage signal based on an electric current from a first power supply circuit into a digital signal and a first storage unit that stores the first voltage signal converted into a digital signal by the analog/digital converter; and a first electric current source that supplies the signal line with an electric current generated by the first voltage signal stored in the first storage unit.
    Type: Application
    Filed: September 27, 2016
    Publication date: October 4, 2018
    Applicant: NIKON CORPORATION
    Inventors: Atsushi KOMAI, Wataru FUNAMIZU, Masahiro JUEN
  • Publication number: 20180284324
    Abstract: An optical member to be arranged in an optical path of a light, includes an optical medium made of an insulator or a semiconductor; a first element provided at a first position in the optical medium and made of a first electric conductor having a width approximately same as or smaller than a wavelength of the light, the first position being a position in the optical path; and a second element provided at a second position, in the optical medium, different from the first position, and made of a second electric conductor having a width approximately same as or smaller than the wavelength of the light, the second position being a position in the optical path.
    Type: Application
    Filed: June 6, 2018
    Publication date: October 4, 2018
    Applicant: NIKON CORPORATION
    Inventors: Soichi OWA, Shunji WATANABE, Junji SUZUKI, Kazuhiro KIDO, Hidemitsu TOBA
  • Publication number: 20180288348
    Abstract: An image sensor includes: an accumulation unit that accumulates an electric charge generated by a photoelectric conversion unit that photoelectrically converts incident light transmitted through a microlens; and a readout unit that reads out a signal based on a voltage of the accumulation unit, wherein the accumulation unit and the readout unit are included along an optical axis direction of the microlens.
    Type: Application
    Filed: September 28, 2016
    Publication date: October 4, 2018
    Applicant: NIKON CORPORATION
    Inventor: Osamu SARUWATARI
  • Publication number: 20180280780
    Abstract: A flying device includes: an image capturing unit that captures an image of an object that is moving; a flying unit that flies with the image capturing unit mounted thereat; and a control unit that controls at least one of the flying unit and the image capturing unit with control information based on an output from the image capturing unit so as to engage the image capturing unit, after having captured the image of the object, to capture an image of the object.
    Type: Application
    Filed: September 21, 2016
    Publication date: October 4, 2018
    Applicant: NIKON CORPORATION
    Inventors: Yuji NAKAO, Akinobu SUGA, Hironori KOBAYASHI, Teruo KOBAYASHI
  • Publication number: 20180284619
    Abstract: A control system controls a drive system of a substrate holder, based on correction information to compensate for measurement error of a measurement system including an encoder system that occurs due to movement of at least one of a plurality of grating areas (scale), a plurality of heads and a substrate holder, and position information measured by the measurement system, and a measurement beam from a head of each of the plurality of heads moves off from one of the plurality of grating areas and switches to another adjacent grating area, during the movement of the substrate holder in the X-axis direction.
    Type: Application
    Filed: September 29, 2016
    Publication date: October 4, 2018
    Applicant: NIKON CORPORATION
    Inventors: Akinori SHIRATO, Takashi SHIBUYA
  • Patent number: 10088343
    Abstract: Position information of a movable body within an XY plane is measured with high accuracy by an encoder system whose measurement values have favorable short-term stability, without being affected by air fluctuations, and also position information of the movable body in a Z-axis direction orthogonal to the XY plane is measured with high accuracy by a surface position measuring system, without being affected by air fluctuations. In this case, since both of the encoder system and the surface position measuring system directly measure the upper surface of the movable body, simple and direct position control of the movable body can be performed.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 25, 2017
    Date of Patent: October 2, 2018
    Assignee: NIKON CORPORATION
    Inventor: Yuichi Shibazaki
  • Patent number: 10088759
    Abstract: A controller of an exposure apparatus is coupled to an alignment system, an aerial image measurement device and an encoder system, to control a drive system based on correction information and measurement information of the encoder system, the correction information compensating a measurement error of the encoder system that occurs due to a plurality of scale members. In an exposure operation of a substrate, a detection operation of a mark of the substrate and a fiducial mark, and a detection operation of an aerial image, the positional information of the stage is measured with the encoder system. In the exposure operation, the substrate is placed facing a lower surface of a nozzle member by a stage, and alignment between a pattern image and the substrate is performed based on detection information of the alignment system and the aerial image measurement device.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 11, 2017
    Date of Patent: October 2, 2018
    Assignee: NIKON CORPORATION
    Inventor: Yuichi Shibazaki
  • Patent number: 10088648
    Abstract: Interpupillary distance of binoculars is adjusted by relatively rotating a pair of lens barrels about a predetermined axis. A click position setting mechanism sets a click position at an arbitrary angle of rotation of said pair of lens barrels and includes a rotating member rotatable about the predetermined axis. A lock/unlock member locks and unlocks the rotation of the rotating member.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 29, 2013
    Date of Patent: October 2, 2018
    Assignee: Nikon Vision Co., Ltd.
    Inventor: Mitsuo Yamamoto
  • Patent number: 10091407
    Abstract: An exchangeable lens includes: a mount unit at which a camera body is detachably engaged; a plurality of drive target members, conditions of which change as a drive force is applied thereto; an initialization unit that executes initialization processing for each of the plurality of drive target members; an initialization status transmission unit that transmits initialization statuses, each indicating a status of the initialization processing executed for one of the drive target members, to the camera body via a first transmission path over predetermined first cycles; and a drive condition transmission unit that transmits a drive condition of at least one drive target member among the plurality of drive target members to the camera body via a second transmission path different from the first transmission path over predetermined second cycles different from the predetermined first cycles.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 30, 2017
    Date of Patent: October 2, 2018
    Assignee: NIKON CORPORATION
    Inventors: Masafumi Oikawa, Kazuharu Imafuji, Shigeo Takahashi, Shunji Nagaya
  • Patent number: 10088760
    Abstract: An exposure apparatus (EX) is an apparatus which exposes a substrate (P) by irradiating exposure light (EL) onto the substrate (P) via a projection optical system (PL) and a liquid (1). The exposure apparatus (EX) has a substrate table (PT) for holding the substrate (P), and a plate member (30) having a liquid repellent flat surface (30A) is replaceably provided to the substrate table (PT) to prevent the liquid from remaining, maintaining excellent exposure accuracy.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 27, 2015
    Date of Patent: October 2, 2018
    Assignee: NIKON CORPORATION
    Inventors: Hiroyuki Nagasaka, Hiroaki Takaiwa, Shigeru Hirukawa, Ryuichi Hoshika, Hitoshi Ishizawa
  • Publication number: 20180278873
    Abstract: An image sensor includes a first voltage source that supplies a first voltage and a plurality of pixels supplied with the first voltage. The pixel includes a photoelectric conversion unit that photoelectrically converts incident light, an accumulation unit to which an electric charge resulting from photoelectric conversion by the photoelectric conversion unit is transferred and accumulated, a transfer unit that transfers the electric charge from the photoelectric conversion unit to the accumulation unit; a second voltage source that supplies a second voltage, and a supply unit that supplies the transfer unit with a transfer signal based on either the first voltage supplied by the first voltage source or the second voltage supplied by the second voltage source.
    Type: Application
    Filed: September 27, 2016
    Publication date: September 27, 2018
    Applicant: NIKON CORPORATION
    Inventor: Osamu SARUWATARI
  • Publication number: 20180275061
    Abstract: A microscope apparatus including: an illumination optical system that radiates activation light to activate some of fluorescent materials included in a sample and excitation light to excite at least some of the activated fluorescent materials; an image forming optical system that: has an objective lens and an astigmatic optical system that generates astigmatism to at least part of fluorescence from the fluorescent materials; and forms an image of the fluorescence; an image-capturing unit that captures an image formed by the image forming optical system; a drive unit that moves an image-capturing position in the sample along an optical axis-direction of the objective lens; and a control unit, wherein the control unit causes the image-capturing unit to capture images in a plurality of numbers of frames respectively at a first image-capturing position and at a second image-capturing position different from the first image-capturing position.
    Type: Application
    Filed: May 29, 2018
    Publication date: September 27, 2018
    Applicant: NIKON CORPORATION
    Inventors: Ichiro SASE, Yasutoshi KANEKO, Tatsuo FUKUI
  • Publication number: 20180278859
    Abstract: An image sensor includes: a first image-capturing unit that includes a plurality of first photoelectric conversion units that perform photoelectric conversion for light at a part of wavelength in incident light and at each of which light at another wavelength in the incident light is transmitted; a plurality of lenses at which the light having been transmitted through the first image-capturing unit enters; and a second image-capturing unit that includes a plurality of second photoelectric conversion units, disposed in correspondence to each of the plurality of lenses, that performs photoelectric conversion for incident light.
    Type: Application
    Filed: September 23, 2016
    Publication date: September 27, 2018
    Applicant: NIKON CORPORATION
    Inventors: Takayuki SUGA, Toru IWANE, Masao NAKAJIMA
  • Publication number: 20180275533
    Abstract: In an exposure apparatus, on a substrate holder, a plurality of grating areas is arranged mutually apart in the X-axis direction, and a plurality of heads that irradiates a measurement beam with respect to the grating area and can move in the Y-axis direction is arranged outside of the substrate holder. A control system controls movement of the substrate holder in at least directions of three degrees of freedom within an XY plane, based on measurement information of at least three heads of the plurality of heads facing the grating area and measurement information of a measurement device that measures position information of the plurality of heads. The measurement beam of each of the plurality of heads, during the movement of substrate holder in the X-axis direction, moves off of one of the plurality of grating areas and switches to another adjacent grating area.
    Type: Application
    Filed: September 29, 2016
    Publication date: September 27, 2018
    Applicant: NIKON CORPORATION
    Inventors: Akinori SHIRATO, Takashi SHIBUYA
  • Publication number: 20180275532
    Abstract: A substrate stage device that moves a substrate has: a noncontact holder that supports the substrate in a noncontact manner; a first drive section that moves the noncontact holder; scale plates that serve as a reference of movement of the noncontact holder; a first measurement section that has scale plates and Y heads, one of the scale plates and the Y heads being provided at the noncontact holder and the other of the scale plates and the Y heads being provided between the scale plates and the noncontact holder, and that measures position information of the Y heads; a second measurement section that measures position information of the other of the scale plates and the Y heads; and a position measurement system that obtains position information of the noncontact holder on the basis of the position information measured by the first and the second measurement sections.
    Type: Application
    Filed: September 29, 2016
    Publication date: September 27, 2018
    Applicant: NIKON CORPORATION
    Inventor: Yasuo AOKI
  • Publication number: 20180278860
    Abstract: An image sensor includes a first semiconductor substrate provided with a pixel, including a photoelectric conversion unit that photoelectrically converts incident light to generate an electric charge, an accumulation unit that accumulates the electric charge generated by the photoelectric conversion unit, and a transfer unit that transfers the electric charge generated by the photoelectric conversion unit to the accumulation unit, and a second semiconductor substrate provided with a supply unit for the pixel, the supply unit supplying the transfer unit with a transfer signal to transfer the electric charge from the photoelectric conversion unit to the accumulation unit.
    Type: Application
    Filed: September 27, 2016
    Publication date: September 27, 2018
    Applicant: NIKON CORPORATION
    Inventors: Osamu SARUWATARI, Shutaro KATO, Ryoji ANDO, Yojiro TEZUKA, Atsushi KOMAI
  • Publication number: 20180275525
    Abstract: Lithographic exposure tool and method for operating thereof that includes modification of the tool (assessed based on the measurements of geometrical distortions caused, in the tool, by the exposure process and used to train the exposure tool) to ensure that such geometrical distortions are reduced for any chosen exposure process. The method includes processing first data (representing distortions caused by initial exposure run(s)) to estimate second data representing distortions that would occur for another exposure run); and forming a modified exposure tool by changing at least one of a) a geometrical path is a path along which the workpiece stage is repositioned during the operation of the exposure tool; b) one or more of a presence, position, orientation, size and shape of an optical component of an optical projection sub-system of the optical system of the exposure tool; and c) a parameter of scanning synchronization of the exposure tool.
    Type: Application
    Filed: March 26, 2018
    Publication date: September 27, 2018
    Applicant: NIKON RESEARCH CORPORATION OF AMERICA
    Inventors: Travis Bow, Fardad Hashemi, Henry Kin Heng Pang
  • Patent number: 10081108
    Abstract: A carrier system is provided with a wafer stage which holds a mounted wafer and is also movable along an XY plane, a chuck unit which holds the wafer from above in a non-contact manner above a predetermined position and is vertically movable, and a plurality of vertical movement pins, which can support from below the wafer held by the chuck unit on the wafer stage when the wafer stage is positioned at the predetermined position above and can also move vertically. Then, flatness of the wafer is measured by a Z position detection system, and based on the measurement results, the chuck unit and the vertical movement pins that hold (support) the wafer are independently driven.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 29, 2017
    Date of Patent: September 25, 2018
    Assignee: NIKON CORPORATION
    Inventor: Hideaki Hara
  • Patent number: 10082738
    Abstract: A liquid immersion member forms, in an exposure apparatus, liquid immersion space through which exposure light emitted from an optical member passes, the liquid immersion member includes: a first member that is disposed at at least part of a space around the optical member and that includes a first lower surface facing an object which is movable below the optical member; and a movable second member that includes a second lower surface which is disposed at outer side than the first lower surface viewed from optical axis of the optical member and which faces the object and a third lower surface which is disposed at inner side than the second lower surface viewed from the optical axis and whose at least part is disposed above at least part of the first lower surface.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 27, 2015
    Date of Patent: September 25, 2018
    Assignee: NIKON CORPORATION
    Inventor: Shinji Sato
  • Patent number: 10084364
    Abstract: A method for moving a stage includes coupling a stage mover to the stage, and directing current to the stage mover with a control system. The stage mover includes a magnet array and a conductor array positioned adjacent to the magnet array. The conductor array includes a first layer of coils and a second layer of coils, with the first layer of coils being closer to the magnet array than the second layer of coils. The control system directs current to the first layer of coils and the second layer of coils independently. Further, the control system directs more current to the first layer of coils than the second layer of coils during a movement step to reduce the power consumption.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 3, 2014
    Date of Patent: September 25, 2018
    Assignee: Nikon Research Corporation of America
    Inventors: Neyram Hemati, Michael Binnard
  • Patent number: 10082739
    Abstract: A liquid immersion exposure apparatus includes a projection system having a last element and a liquid supply system by which an immersion liquid is supplied to form a liquid immersion area under the projection system. The liquid supply system has a first supply port and a second supply port. A position of the first supply port is different from a position of the second supply port, and the liquid supply system is capable of supplying the immersion liquid having a first temperature via the first supply port and supplying the immersion liquid having a second temperature different from the first temperature via the second supply port. The liquid immersion area is formed to cover only a portion of an upper surface of the substrate, and the substrate is exposed with an exposure beam through the immersion liquid in the liquid immersion area.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 15, 2016
    Date of Patent: September 25, 2018
    Assignee: NIKON CORPORATION
    Inventor: Shigeru Hirukawa
  • Patent number: 10085000
    Abstract: An imaging device includes an imaging sensor that outputs an imaging signal representing a sequence of frame images of a photographic subject. A buffer memory temporarily stores data of the sequence of frame images from the imaging signal. A release switch is actuated by a user to output an image-taking signal. A controller, upon receipt of the image-taking signal from the release switch: (i) generates moving image data from at least some of the plurality of frame images stored in the buffer memory, (ii) generates at least one piece of still image data based on at least one frame image of the plurality of frame images stored in the buffer memory, and (iii) associates the moving image data with the still image data and records the moving image data and the still image data in a recording medium.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 20, 2016
    Date of Patent: September 25, 2018
    Assignee: NIKON CORPORATION
    Inventor: Takashi Kuriyama
  • Publication number: 20180267425
    Abstract: Patterns from a phase array are transferred to a substrate such as a series of overlapping patterns and non-overlapping patterns. The overlapping patterns are associated with phase array pixel offsets so as to overlap at the substrate and the necessary overlap is based on substrate scan speed. Non-overlapping or offset patterns are obtained by varying optical pulse timing as the substrate is scanned, or by including a corresponding offset to pattern definition at the phase array.
    Type: Application
    Filed: March 9, 2018
    Publication date: September 20, 2018
    Applicant: Nikon Corporation
    Inventor: Shane R. Palmer
  • Publication number: 20180267791
    Abstract: A power supply device is caused to execute a new program. An electronic apparatus that receives power from a power supply device in a non-contact manner includes: an intra-apparatus circuit that operates with power received via a power transmission path from the power supply device to the electronic apparatus; a program acquiring unit that acquires a program to be executed by the power supply device from outside, and stores the program; and an apparatus-side communicating unit that transmits the program to the power supply device via the power transmission path.
    Type: Application
    Filed: May 18, 2018
    Publication date: September 20, 2018
    Applicant: NIKON CORPORATION
    Inventor: Goro KANO
  • Publication number: 20180266916
    Abstract: An apparatus and method for measuring thermo-mechanically induced reticle distortion or other distortion in a lithography device enables detecting distortion at the nanometer level in situ. The techniques described use relatively simple optical detectors and data acquisition electronics that are capable of monitoring the distortion in real time, during operation of the lithography equipment. Time-varying anisotropic distortion of a reticle can be measured by directing slit patterns of light having different orientations to the reticle and detecting reflected, transmitted or diffracted light from the reticle. In one example, corresponding segments of successive time measurements of secondary light signals are compared as the reticle scans a substrate at a reticle stage speed of about 1 m/s to detect temporal offsets and other features that correspond to spatial distortion.
    Type: Application
    Filed: May 18, 2018
    Publication date: September 20, 2018
    Applicant: Nikon Corporation
    Inventor: Michael Sogard
  • Patent number: 10078269
    Abstract: System and method for accurately measuring alignment of every exposure field on a pre-patterned wafer without reducing wafer-exposure throughput. Diffraction grating disposed in scribe-lines of such wafer, used as alignment marks, and array of encoder-heads (each of which is configured to define positional phase(s) of at least one such alignment mark) are used. Determination of trajectory of a wafer-stage scanning during the wafer-exposure in the exposure tool employs determining in-plane coordinates of such spatially-periodic alignment marks by simultaneously measuring position-dependent phases of signals produced by these marks as a result of recombination of light corresponding to different diffraction orders produced by these marks.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 3, 2016
    Date of Patent: September 18, 2018
    Assignee: NIKON CORPORATION
    Inventors: Eric Peter Goodwin, Michael B. Binnard, Ruslan Kurdyumov
  • Publication number: 20180257237
    Abstract: A carrier system and method carries a plate-like object to an object mounting member provided with an object mounting section. The system includes an adjustment device that changes a shape of the plate-like object into a predetermined shape before the plate-like object is mounted onto the object mounting section. The plate-like object whose shape is changed into the predetermined shape is mounted onto the object mounting section.
    Type: Application
    Filed: May 9, 2018
    Publication date: September 13, 2018
    Applicant: NIKON CORPORATION
    Inventor: Hideaki HARA
  • Publication number: 20180259368
    Abstract: There is provided an encoder device to measure a relative moving amount between a first and second members. The encoder device includes: a reflective-type diffraction grating on the first member; a light source unit to radiate a measuring light; a first optical member on the second member; a first and second reflecting units on the second member that cause first and third diffracted lights generated via diffraction of the measuring light and having orders different from each other to come into the diffraction grating respectively, and cause second and fourth diffracted lights generated via diffraction of the first and third diffracted lights respectively to come into the first optical member; photo-detectors configured to detect interference lights between two diffracted lights and other light beam respectively; and a measuring unit to obtain the relative moving amount by using detection signals from the photo-detectors.
    Type: Application
    Filed: April 27, 2018
    Publication date: September 13, 2018
    Applicant: NIKON CORPORATION
    Inventor: Zhigiang LIU
  • Publication number: 20180262702
    Abstract: An image sensor that captures an image of light from a predetermined depth of a subject, includes: a photoelectric converter that photoelectrically converts light including interference light of light from the subject and reference light; a discrimination unit that locks in and detects a signal component having an interference frequency in an interference light component corresponding to the predetermined depth from a signal output from the photoelectric converter; and a floating diffusion unit that temporarily accumulates an electric charge resulting from the photoelectric conversion by the photoelectric converter; wherein: the discrimination unit includes: a transfer unit that transfers the signal to the floating diffusion unit; and a sampling unit that samples the electric charge accumulated in the floating diffusion unit at a sampling frequency determined based on the interference frequency.
    Type: Application
    Filed: May 16, 2018
    Publication date: September 13, 2018
    Applicant: NIKON CORPORATION
    Inventor: Naoki OHKOUCHI
  • Patent number: D829260
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 15, 2017
    Date of Patent: September 25, 2018
    Assignee: Nikon Corporation
    Inventors: Chikara Fujita, Hiroyuki Asano
  • Patent number: D831092
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 19, 2014
    Date of Patent: October 16, 2018
    Assignee: Nikon Corporation
    Inventor: Sumito Watanabe