Patents Examined by Christopher G. Young
  • Patent number: 10353285
    Abstract: A structure including an EUV mask and a pellicle attached to the EUV mask. The pellicle includes a pellicle frame and a plurality of pellicle membrane layers attached to the pellicle frame. The plurality of pellicle membrane layers include at least one core pellicle membrane layer and an additional pellicle membrane layer is disposed on the at least one core pellicle membrane layer. In some embodiments, the additional pellicle membrane layer is a material having a thermal emissivity greater than 0.2, a transmittance greater than 80%, and a refractive index (n) for 13.5 nanometer source of greater than 0.9.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 15, 2018
    Date of Patent: July 16, 2019
    Assignee: Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Hsin-Chang Lee, Pei-Cheng Hsu, Yun-Yue Lin, Hsuan-Chen Chen, Hsuan-I Wang, Anthony Yen
  • Patent number: 10345692
    Abstract: A method of fabricating a photomask includes depositing a phase shifter over a light transmitting substrate, depositing a shading layer over the light transmitting substrate, and removing a portion of the shading layer and a portion of the phase shifter to expose a portion of the light transmitting substrate. The phase shifter having at least two semiconductor layers and at least two dielectric layers.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 5, 2017
    Date of Patent: July 9, 2019
    Assignee: TAIWAN SEMICONDUCTOR MANUFACTURING COMPANY, LTD.
    Inventors: Chun-Lang Chen, Chih-Chiang Tu, Shih-Hao Yang
  • Patent number: 10347485
    Abstract: The present invention aims to provide a reflective mask blank and a reflective mask which have a highly smooth multilayer reflective film as well as a low number of defects, and methods of manufacturing the same, and aims to prevent charge-up during a mask defect inspection using electron beams.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 14, 2015
    Date of Patent: July 9, 2019
    Assignee: HOYA CORPORATION
    Inventors: Tsutomu Shoki, Tatsuo Asakawa, Hirofumi Kozakai
  • Patent number: 10345695
    Abstract: The present disclosure describes a method to form alignment marks on or in the top layer of an extreme ultraviolet (EUV) mask blank without the use of photolithographic methods. For example, the method can include forming a metal structure on the top layer of the EUV mask blank by dispensing a hexacarbonylchromium vapor on the top layer of the EUV mask and exposing the hexacarbonylchromium vapor to an electron-beam. The hexacarbonylchromium vapor is decomposed to form the metal structure at an area which is proximate to where the hexacarbonylchromium vapors interact with the electron-beam. In another example, the method can include forming a patterned structure in the top layer of an EUV mask blank with the use of an etcher aperture and an etching process.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 31, 2017
    Date of Patent: July 9, 2019
    Assignee: Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Yi-Fu Hsieh, Chih-Chiang Tu, Jong-Yuh Chang, Hsin-Chang Lee
  • Patent number: 10345715
    Abstract: Method and system configured to reduce or even nullify the degradation of images created by the projector tool turns on the optimization of the pattern-imaging by adjusting parameters and hardware of the projector to judiciously impact the placement of various image edges at different locations in the image field. Adjustments to the projector (exposure tool) include a change of a setup parameter of the exposure tool and/or scanning synchronization and/or a change of a signature of the optical system of the exposure tool determined as a result of minimizing the pre-determined cost function(s) that are parts of a comprehensive edge-placement error model.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 21, 2018
    Date of Patent: July 9, 2019
    Assignee: NIKON CORPORATION
    Inventor: Jacek K. Tyminski
  • Patent number: 10338463
    Abstract: A mask for photolithography includes: a transparent substrate; a phase shift pattern on the transparent substrate and configured to change a phase of light; a dielectric layer on the transparent substrate; and a negative refractive-index meta material layer on the dielectric layer.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 8, 2017
    Date of Patent: July 2, 2019
    Assignees: Samsung Display Co., Ltd., Industry-Academic Cooperation Foundation, Yonsei University
    Inventors: Yong Son, Min Kang, Bong-Yeon Kim, Hyun-Joo Lee, Hyang-Shik Kong, Jin-Ho Ju, Kyoung-Sik Kim, Seung-Hwa Baek
  • Patent number: 10338474
    Abstract: Lithographic apparatuses suitable for, and methodologies involving, complementary e-beam lithography (CEBL) are described. Particular embodiments are directed to implementation of an underlying absorbing and/or conducting layer for ebeam direct write (EBDW) lithography.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 18, 2015
    Date of Patent: July 2, 2019
    Assignee: Intel Corporation
    Inventors: Shakul Tandon, Yan A. Borodovsky, Charles H. Wallace, Paul A. Nyhus
  • Patent number: 10338465
    Abstract: There is provided a pellicle frame which prevents particles such as carbon black particles or filler particles from contaminating a photomask even when stray light hits the inside face of the pellicle frame in the exposure step of photolithography. More specifically, provided are a pellicle frame including a frame base, and a polymer coating layer coating at least an inner circumferential surface of the frame base, the polymer coating layer including an outermost polymer layer on a side farthest away from the frame base and one or more inner polymer layers between the frame base and the outermost polymer layer, wherein at least one of the one or more inner polymer layers contains particles, and the outermost polymer layer contains no particles or has a particle concentration lower than a highest particle concentration among the one or more inner polymer layers; and a pellicle including the pellicle frame.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 16, 2017
    Date of Patent: July 2, 2019
    Assignee: SHIN-ETSU CHEMICAL CO., LTD.
    Inventor: Yuichi Hamada
  • Patent number: 10338464
    Abstract: A photomask includes a light transmission substrate, a plurality of pattern regions disposed over the light transmission substrate, a shape of the plurality of pattern regions being transferred onto a wafer during an exposure process, and a light blocking region surrounding the plurality of pattern regions. Each of the plurality of pattern regions is a light transmitting region that exposes a portion of the light transmission substrate. The light blocking region includes first light blocking patterns that respectively surround the plurality of pattern regions to have closed loop shapes and second light blocking patterns that are disposed between adjacent first light blocking patterns, adjacent second light blocking patterns being spaced apart from each other by a first distance in a first direction. And the first light blocking patterns have a first thickness and the second light blocking patterns have a second thickness which is smaller than the first thickness.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 14, 2017
    Date of Patent: July 2, 2019
    Assignee: SK HYNIX INC.
    Inventor: Tae Joong Ha
  • Patent number: 10324372
    Abstract: A method of fabricating a multi-tone amplitude photomask includes providing a mask substrate. The method includes providing a stepped pattern in at least one layer of material on a surface of the mask substrate. The stepped pattern includes at least two steps and at least three levels. Each level of the stepped pattern provides a different intensity of light when a light source shines light on the stepped pattern.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 5, 2017
    Date of Patent: June 18, 2019
    Assignee: Marsupial Holdings, Inc.
    Inventors: William P. Parker, Julie Parker
  • Patent number: 10295899
    Abstract: A photomask includes a pattern region and a plurality of defects in the pattern region. The photomask further includes a first fiducial mark outside of the pattern region, wherein the first fiducial mark includes identifying information for the photomask, the first fiducial mark has a first size and a first shape. The photomask further includes a second fiducial mark outside of the pattern region. The second fiducial mark has a second size different from the first size, or a second shape different from the first shape.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 19, 2017
    Date of Patent: May 21, 2019
    Assignee: TAIWAN SEMICONDUCTOR MANUFACTURING COMPANY, LTD.
    Inventors: Hsin-Chang Lee, Chia-Jen Chen, Chih-Cheng Lin, Ping-Hsun Lin
  • Patent number: 10295900
    Abstract: Disclosed is a mask blank substrate for use in lithography, wherein the main surface on which the transfer pattern of the substrate is formed has a root mean square roughness (Rms) of not more than 0.15 nm obtained by measuring an area of 1 ?m×1 ?m with an atomic force microscope, and has a power spectrum density of not more than 10 nm4 at a spatial frequency of not less than 1 ?m?1.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 16, 2018
    Date of Patent: May 21, 2019
    Assignee: HOYA CORPORATION
    Inventors: Toshihiko Orihara, Kazuhiro Hamamoto, Hirofumi Kozakai, Youichi Usui, Tsutomu Shoki, Junichi Horikawa
  • Patent number: 10281826
    Abstract: Embodiments are directed to a method and system for determining effective dose of a lithography tool. The method includes performing a series of open frame exposures with the lithography tool on a substrate to produce a set of controlled exposure dose blocks in resist, and then baking and developing the exposed substrate. The method further includes scanning the resultant open frame images with oblique light and capturing the light scattered from the substrate surface. The method further includes creating a haze map from the background signal of the scattered light data, converting the haze map to a graphical image file, and analyzing the graphical image file to determine effective dose of the lithography tool, wherein a brightness of the graphical image file is related to effective dose of the lithography tool.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 27, 2017
    Date of Patent: May 7, 2019
    Assignee: INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS MACHINES CORPORATION
    Inventors: Daniel A. Corliss, Luciana Meli Thompson, Christopher F. Robinson
  • Patent number: 10281814
    Abstract: A support frame for a pellicle, in which a pellicle film is adhered to the front surface of an aluminum-alloy frame body, and a transparent substrate is adhered to the rear surface of the frame body. A recessed groove is formed in the rear surface of the frame body, the recessed groove extending along the periphery of the frame body, and a vent hole is formed from the outer peripheral surface of the frame body to the inner surface of the recessed groove. With this configuration, deformation of the support frame can be suppressed when the support frame is removed from the transparent substrate.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 29, 2015
    Date of Patent: May 7, 2019
    Assignee: NIPPON LIGHT METAL COMPANY, LTD.
    Inventors: Hayato Kiyomi, Naoto Komura
  • Patent number: 10274836
    Abstract: Embodiments are directed to a method and system for determining effective dose of a lithography tool. The method includes performing a series of open frame exposures with the lithography tool on a substrate to produce a set of controlled exposure dose blocks in resist, and then baking and developing the exposed substrate. The method further includes scanning the resultant open frame images with oblique light and capturing the light scattered from the substrate surface. The method further includes creating a haze map from the background signal of the scattered light data, converting the haze map to a graphical image file, and analyzing the graphical image file to determine effective dose of the lithography tool, wherein a brightness of the graphical image file is related to effective dose of the lithography tool.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 23, 2017
    Date of Patent: April 30, 2019
    Assignee: INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS MACHINES CORPORATION
    Inventors: Daniel A. Corliss, Luciana Meli Thompson, Christopher F. Robinson
  • Patent number: 10274817
    Abstract: A mask includes a transparent substrate, a first pattern, a second pattern, and a sub-resolution auxiliary feature. The first pattern and the second pattern are over the transparent substrate. The first pattern has an area of 0.16 ?m2 to 60000 ?m2. The second pattern has an area of 0.16 ?m2 to 60000 ?m2. The sub-resolution auxiliary feature is over the transparent substrate and connects the first pattern and the second pattern.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 31, 2017
    Date of Patent: April 30, 2019
    Assignee: Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Ching-Hung Lai, Chih-Chung Huang, Chih-Chiang Tu, Chung-Hung Lin, Chi-Ming Tsai, Ming-Ho Tsai
  • Patent number: 10274821
    Abstract: A mask includes a plurality of line patterns provided on a substrate, the plurality of line patterns each including a line comprising a plurality of first layers and a plurality of second layers alternately stacked on the substrate. The lines of the plurality of line patterns extend in a first direction and the lines of the plurality of line patterns are spaced in a second direction crossing the first direction. A line of one of the plurality of line patterns has a first portion and a second portion on a side of the first portion in the first direction, the first portion wider than the second portion in the second direction.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 3, 2017
    Date of Patent: April 30, 2019
    Assignee: Toshiba Memory Corporation
    Inventors: Keiko Morishita, Shingo Kanamitsu
  • Patent number: 10274820
    Abstract: A pellicle for lithography processes, including extreme ultraviolet (EUV) lithography may mitigate thermal accumulation in a membrane of the pellicle. The pellicle includes a membrane and at least one thermal buffer layer on at least one surface of the membrane. An emissivity of the thermal buffer layer may be greater than an emissivity of the membrane. A carbon content of the thermal buffer layer may be greater than a carbon content of the membrane. Multiple thermal buffer layers may be on separate surfaces of the membrane, and the thermal buffer layers may have different properties. A capping layer may be on at least one thermal buffer layer, and the capping layer may include a hydrogen resistant material. A thermal buffer layer may extend over some or all of a surface of the membrane. A thermal buffer layer may be between at least two membranes.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 13, 2018
    Date of Patent: April 30, 2019
    Assignee: Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Hwanchul Jeon, Munja Kim, Sungwon Kwon, Byunggook Kim, Roman Chalykh, Yongseok Jung, Jaehyuck Choi
  • Patent number: 10274830
    Abstract: The present disclosure relates to a dynamic lithographic exposure method, and an associated apparatus, which exposes a photosensitive material over a plurality of depths of focus respectively spanning a different region of the photosensitive material. By exposing the photosensitive material over a plurality of depths of focus, the exposure of the photosensitive material is improved resulting in a larger lithographic process window. In some embodiments, the dynamic lithographic exposure method is performed by forming a photosensitive material over a substrate. The photosensitive material is exposed to electromagnetic radiation at a plurality of depths of focus that respectively span a different region within the photosensitive material. Exposing the photosensitive material to the electromagnetic radiation modifies a solubility of an exposed region within the photosensitive material. The photosensitive material is then developed to remove the soluble region.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 6, 2017
    Date of Patent: April 30, 2019
    Assignee: Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Jun-Yih Yu, De-Fang Huang, De-Chen Tseng, Jia-Feng Chang, Li-Fang Hsu
  • Patent number: 10274841
    Abstract: A reticle for a semiconductor lithography process includes a glass plate having regions with a reduced optical transmission factor. The regions may include arrays of elements comprising defects such as cracks or voids which are formed by laser pulses. The regions may be adjacent to openings in an opaque material at the bottom of the reticle to shield the openings from a portion of the light which illuminates the reticle from the top. As a result, the light which exits the reticle and is used to pattern a substrate has an asymmetric intensity. This allows the substrate to be patterned with an inspection mark which indicates whether a defocus condition exists, and whether there is a positive or negative defocus condition. Related methods use a reticle to form a pattern on a substrate and for adjusting a focus condition using a reticle.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 4, 2017
    Date of Patent: April 30, 2019
    Assignee: SanDisck Technologies LLC
    Inventor: Akihiro Tobioka