Patents Examined by Christopher G. Young
  • Patent number: 10437142
    Abstract: A support frame for a pellicle includes a frame body made of an aluminum alloy. The frame body has: a top surface onto which a pellicle film is bonded; and an underside surface onto which a transparent substrate is bonded. A material of which the frame body is made has a Young's modulus larger than that of which the transparent substrate is made. The structure described above makes it possible to reduce deformation of the transparent substrate.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 2, 2016
    Date of Patent: October 8, 2019
    Assignee: NIPPON LIGHT METAL COMPANY, LTD.
    Inventors: Akira Iizuka, Koichi Nakano, Hayato Kiyomi, Kazuhiro Oda, Tomohiro Isobe
  • Patent number: 10437145
    Abstract: A pellicle includes a pellicle frame, a pellicle membrane, and an attaching element, a first surface of the attaching element having exposed pores.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 9, 2018
    Date of Patent: October 8, 2019
    Assignee: Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Jae-hyuck Choi, Jin-su Kim, Kyoung-mi Kim, Byung-gook Kim
  • Patent number: 10429728
    Abstract: Disclosed is a mask blank substrate for use in lithography, wherein a main surface of the substrate satisfies a relational equation of (BA70?BA30)/(BD70?BD30)?350 (%/nm), and has a maximum height (Rmax)?1.2 nm in a relation between a bearing area (%) and a bearing depth (nm) obtained by measuring, with an atomic force microscope, an area of 1 ?m×1 ?m in the main surface on the side of the substrate where a transfer pattern is formed, wherein BA30 is defined as a bearing area of 30%, BA70 is defined as a bearing area of 70%, and BD70 and BD30 are defined to respectively represent bearing depths for the bearing area of 30% and the bearing area of 70%.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 28, 2017
    Date of Patent: October 1, 2019
    Assignee: HOYA CORPORATION
    Inventors: Kazuhiro Hamamoto, Toshihiko Orihara, Hirofumi Kozakai, Youichi Usui, Tsutomu Shoki, Junichi Horikawa
  • Patent number: 10423063
    Abstract: A correction method for a mask pattern is provided. The method includes providing a chip pattern region including a plurality of main features, and providing first auxiliary patterns around each main feature. The method also includes performing a first optical proximity correction to correct the main features into first correction features, and providing a plurality of detection regions. Each detection region is connected to an adjacent first correction feature via the first auxiliary pattern. In addition, the method includes performing an exposure process to obtain a light intensity distribution corresponding to each detection region after performing the exposure process. Moreover, the method includes correcting the first auxiliary patterns into second auxiliary patterns based on an auxiliary pattern correction model and the light intensity distribution of each detection region.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 18, 2018
    Date of Patent: September 24, 2019
    Assignees: Semiconductor Manufacturing International (Shanghai) Corporation, Semiconductor Manufacturing International (Beijing) Corporation
    Inventors: Yao Jun Du, Liang Li
  • Patent number: 10423062
    Abstract: Methods for correcting target patterns and masks having corrected target patterns are provided. An exemplary correction method includes dividing contours of target patterns into fragments; performing an optical proximity correction to obtain mask patterns; obtaining simulated exposure patterns; detecting the simulated exposure patterns to find out existence of at least one weak point; determining a correction window in the target patterns; comparing the target patterns in the correction window with the simulated exposure patterns to obtain a position error of each fragment; calculating an effect value of a correction value of each fragment in the correction window on position errors of all fragments in the correction window; determining the correction value of each fragment according to the effect value of the correction value in the correction window on position errors of all fragments and the position error of each fragment; and obtaining corrected target patterns using the correction value.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 3, 2017
    Date of Patent: September 24, 2019
    Assignees: Semiconductor Manufacturing International (Shanghai) Corporation, Semiconductor Manufacturing International (Beijing) Corporation
    Inventors: Yao Jun Du, Liang Li
  • Patent number: 10423076
    Abstract: A method including: obtaining at least a characteristic of deformation of a resist layer in a first direction, as if there were no deformation in any directions perpendicular to the first direction; obtaining at least a characteristic of deformation of the resist layer in a second direction as if there were no deformation in the first direction, the second direction being perpendicular different to from the first direction; and obtaining at least a characteristic of three-dimensional deformation of the resist layer based on the characteristic of the deformation in the first direction and the characteristic of the deformation in the second direction.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 24, 2016
    Date of Patent: September 24, 2019
    Assignee: ASML Netherlands B.V.
    Inventor: Peng Liu
  • Patent number: 10416550
    Abstract: Embodiments disclosed herein relate to an exposure pattern alteration software application which manipulates exposure polygons having lines with angles substantially close to angles of symmetry of a hex close pack arrangement, which suffer from long jogs. Long jogs present themselves as high edge placement error regions. As such, the exposure pattern alteration software application provides for line wave reduction by serrating polygon edges at affected angles to reduce edge placement errors during maskless lithography patterning in a manufacturing process.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 26, 2018
    Date of Patent: September 17, 2019
    Assignee: APPLIED MATERIALS, INC.
    Inventors: Joseph R. Johnson, Christopher Dennis Bencher, Thomas L. Laidig
  • Patent number: 10409154
    Abstract: A method and apparatus for removing a pellicle from a photomask wherein the adhesive between the pellicle frame and photomask is cooled sufficiently to allow the adhesive property of the adhesive to diminish to the point where the adhesive will release from the photomask with little or no mechanical force and leaving minimal adhesive on the photomask. The adhesive is cooled by way of manifolds containing coolant being brought in contact with the pellicle frame or by way of a coolant spray nozzles spraying coolant directly onto the pellicle frame.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 24, 2018
    Date of Patent: September 10, 2019
    Assignee: Bruker Nano, Inc.
    Inventors: Brian J. Grenon, James Boyette, Alexander M. Figliolini
  • Patent number: 10401724
    Abstract: An optical mask has a first pellicle attached. The optical mask is inspected with the first pellicle in place using first wavelengths of electromagnetic radiation. The first pellicle is replaced with a second pellicle. The first pellicle only allows the first wavelengths of electromagnetic radiation to pass, and the second pellicle allows second wavelengths that are shorter than the first wavelengths to pass. A photoresist is exposed using the optical mask with the second pellicle in place. The second pellicle is replaced with the first pellicle. The optical mask is again inspected with the first pellicle in place using the first wavelengths of electromagnetic radiation.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 7, 2017
    Date of Patent: September 3, 2019
    Assignee: GLOBALFOUNDRIES INC.
    Inventors: Oktawian Sobieraj, Paul W. Ackmann, SherJang Singh
  • Patent number: 10401741
    Abstract: Embodiments of the disclosure disclose a method and structure for detecting distortion in a pattern. In this solution, a first photosensitive material is exposed and developed to form a desirable pattern to be detected, and also a detection step including two levels at different heights is formed in a preset detection area of the pattern to be detected; and then a second photosensitive material is exposed and developed according to the same exposure machine parameters to form a detection pattern in the detection area for detecting exposure defocusing, and if preset size parameters of the detection pattern at the two levels of the detection step are consistent, then it is indicated that the formed pattern to be detected is not distorted due to exposure defocusing; otherwise, it is indicated that the pattern to be detected is distorted due to exposure defocusing.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 28, 2017
    Date of Patent: September 3, 2019
    Assignee: BOE TECHNOLOGY GROUP CO., LTD.
    Inventor: Wusheng Li
  • Patent number: 10394117
    Abstract: A pellicle film for extreme ultraviolet (EUV) lithography includes a graphite-containing thin film.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 11, 2018
    Date of Patent: August 27, 2019
    Assignees: Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd., Research & Business Foundation Sungkyunkwan University, Fine Semitech Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Mun Ja Kim, Ji-beom Yoo, Seul-gi Kim, Sang-jin Cho, Myung-shik Chang, Jang-dong You
  • Patent number: 10394118
    Abstract: The present invention provides a halftone mask comprising an assist pattern and a manufacturing method of the halftone mask, which uses an ArF excimer laser as an exposing source, is used for a projection exposure by an off axis illumination, does not resolve the assist pattern while keeping the focal depth magnification effect as the assist pattern, and may form a transferred image having high contrast of a main pattern.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 12, 2018
    Date of Patent: August 27, 2019
    Assignee: DAI NIPPON PRINTING CO., LTD.
    Inventors: Takaharu Nagai, Hiroshi Mohri, Yasutaka Morikawa, Katsuya Hayano
  • Patent number: 10394113
    Abstract: An object of the present invention is to obtain a reflective mask blank capable of obtaining high contrast at the edges of a phase shift film pattern. Provided is a reflective mask blank comprising a multilayer reflective film and a phase shift film that shifts the phase of EUV light formed in that order on a substrate, wherein root mean square roughness (Rms), obtained by measuring a 1 ?m×1 ?m region on the surface of the phase shift film with an atomic force microscope, is not more than 0.50 nm, and power spectrum density at a spatial frequency of 10 to 100 ?m?1 is not more than 17 nm4.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 15, 2015
    Date of Patent: August 27, 2019
    Assignee: HOYA CORPORATION
    Inventors: Kazuhiro Hamamoto, Yohei Ikebe
  • Patent number: 10386722
    Abstract: Lithographic apparatuses suitable for, and methodologies involving, complementary e-beam lithography (CEBL) are described. In an example, a blanker aperture array (BAA) for an e-beam tool includes a first column of openings along a first direction and having a pitch. The BAA also includes a second column of openings along the first direction and staggered from the first column of openings. The second column of openings has the pitch. A scan direction of the BAA is along a second direction, orthogonal to the first direction.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 19, 2014
    Date of Patent: August 20, 2019
    Assignee: Intel Corporation
    Inventors: Yan A. Borodovsky, Donald W. Nelson, Mark C. Phillips
  • Patent number: 10372043
    Abstract: A method for improving a lithographic process for imaging a portion of a design layout onto a substrate using a lithographic apparatus, the method including: obtaining a relationship of a characteristic of one or more features in the portion with respect to dose; obtaining a value of the characteristic; and obtaining a target dose based on the value of the characteristic and the relationship.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 11, 2015
    Date of Patent: August 6, 2019
    Assignee: ASML Netherlands B.V.
    Inventors: Gang Chen, Te-Sheng Wang
  • Patent number: 10372029
    Abstract: There are provided a reflective mask and a reflective mask blank reducing reflection of out-of-band light and a manufacturing method therefor. A light shielding frame is formed on a mask region corresponding to a multiply exposed boundary region between a chip and a semiconductor substrate. The frame is provided with an antireflective layer causing surface reflection in antiphase to out-of-band light reflected from the surfaces of a rear-surface conductive film and the substrate to provide a reflective mask reducing reflection of out-of-band light. The antireflective layer of the present disclosure has an electrical conductivity of 1×104/m? or greater to minimize charging occurring in a pattern region in observing the region using an electron microscope.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 26, 2016
    Date of Patent: August 6, 2019
    Assignee: TOPPAN PRINTING CO., LTD.
    Inventors: Tomohiro Imoto, Norihito Fukugami
  • Patent number: 10365556
    Abstract: Provided is a mask blank including a phase shift film on a transparent substrate. This phase shift film includes a phase shift layer at least containing a transition metal and silicon, and a silicon layer, which is configured to attenuate exposure light with which the phase shift layer is irradiated, and the silicon layer is formed to be in contact with the substrate side of the phase shift layer. This mask blank is used in manufacturing a phase shift mask to which laser exposure light having a wavelength of 200 nm or less is applied.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 24, 2016
    Date of Patent: July 30, 2019
    Assignee: HOYA CORPORATION
    Inventors: Hiroaki Shishido, Osamu Nozawa
  • Patent number: 10365568
    Abstract: In a beam irradiation apparatus in which a movable body holds an object, a mark detection system detects a first mark on the movable body while moving the movable body in a first direction and changing an irradiation position of a measurement beam in the first direction, the mark detection system detects a second mark while moving the movable body in the first direction and changing the irradiation position of the measurement beam in the first direction, a controller controls a position of the movable body in a second direction intersecting the first direction during a time period between the detection of the first mark and the detection of the second mark, and the controller controls the movement of the movable body to adjust a positional relation between the object on the movable body and a processing beam, based on results of the detection of the first and second marks.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 27, 2018
    Date of Patent: July 30, 2019
    Assignee: NIKON CORPORATION
    Inventor: Akihiro Ueda
  • Patent number: 10359694
    Abstract: The disclosure is related to a lithographic mask for EUV lithography, to a method for producing the mask, to a method for printing a pattern with the mask, to a stepper/scanner configured to print a pattern with the mask as well as to a computer-implemented method for calculating a deformation of the pattern. The mask comprises an absorber pattern, which is intentionally deformed in the 2-dimensional plane of the EUV mask, with respect to the intended pattern. The deformation of the pattern is based on a previous measurement of the location of multilayer defects on the blank, and calculated so that in the deformed pattern, a maximum of multilayer defects are covered by absorber material. When the pattern is subsequently printed on a semiconductor wafer in a stepper/scanner, the scanner operation is modulated so that the pattern deformation is not reproduced on the wafer.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 30, 2017
    Date of Patent: July 23, 2019
    Assignee: IMEC VZW
    Inventors: Rik Jonckheere, Koen D'have
  • Patent number: 10353283
    Abstract: Provided are an adhesive comprising substantially no surface modifier and leaving a less residue behind after a pellicle is separated; a pellicle; and a method of selecting an adhesive leaving a less residue behind. More specifically, provided are an adhesive for a pellicle having a ratio of a peel strength to a tensile strength of from 0.10 to 0.33; a pellicle comprising a pellicle frame, a pellicle film provided over an upper end face of the pellicle frame, and the adhesive adhered to a lower end face of the pellicle frame; and a method of selecting an adhesive, comprising the steps of: measuring a peel strength and a tensile strength of an adhesive, and selecting an adhesive having a ratio of the former to the latter of from 0.10 to 0.33 as the adhesive for a pellicle.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 30, 2017
    Date of Patent: July 16, 2019
    Assignee: SHIN-ETSU CHEMICAL CO., LTD.
    Inventors: Yu Yanase, Jun Horikoshi