Patents Examined by Hung Nguyen
  • Patent number: 10386732
    Abstract: The disclosure relates to a bearing assembly for a lithography system, having an optical element, a base, and a bearing device that moveably supports the optical element relative to the base. The bearing device has at least one torsion decoupling element that reduces a transmission of torsional moments between the optical element and the base. The torsion decoupling element has at least two leaf springs which have respective opposing narrow sides and which bring about torsional moments about an axis perpendicular to the narrow sides. The at least two leaf springs are also positioned at an angle to one another and are coupled to one another in such a way that a force flow through the torsion decoupling element simultaneously flows through the at least two leaf springs.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 6, 2018
    Date of Patent: August 20, 2019
    Assignee: Carl Zeiss SMT GmbH
    Inventor: Pascal Marsollek
  • Patent number: 10384350
    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: Grant
    Filed: May 9, 2018
    Date of Patent: August 20, 2019
    Assignee: NIKON CORPORATION
    Inventor: Hideaki Hara
  • Patent number: 10372042
    Abstract: Embodiments of the present disclosure generally relate to methods and apparatus for processing one or more substrates, and more specifically to improved spatial light modulators for digital lithography systems and digital lithography methods using improved spatial light modulators. The spatial light modulator is configured such that there is a 180-degree phase shift between adjacent spatial light modulator pixels. The spatial light modulator is useful for pixel blending by forming a plurality of partially overlapping images, at least one of the plurality of partially overlapping images having at least two pixels formed by a first pair of adjacent spatial light modulator pixels having a 180-degree phase shift therebetween. The spatial light modulator results in improved resolution, depth of focus, and pixel blending.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 15, 2018
    Date of Patent: August 6, 2019
    Assignee: APPLIED MATERIALS, INC.
    Inventors: Thomas L. Laidig, Hwan J. Jeong
  • Patent number: 10365567
    Abstract: A control system configured to control a parameter of a dynamic system, wherein the parameter depends on an output signal. The control system comprises a set-point generator and a feedforward, wherein the set-point generator is arranged to provide a set-point signal to the feedforward. The feedforward is arranged to provide the output signal based on the set-point signal, wherein the feedforward is arranged to perform a non-linear operation on the set-point signal. The non-linear operation is based on a non-linear functional relationship between the output signal and the parameter.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 19, 2016
    Date of Patent: July 30, 2019
    Assignee: ASML Netherlands B.V.
    Inventors: Jeroen Johannes Theodorus Hendrikus De Best, Wilhelmus Henricus Theodorus Maria Aangenent, Stan Henricus Van Der Meulen
  • Patent number: 10359702
    Abstract: Provided is a development processing apparatus including a rotary holding unit configured to hold and rotate a wafer, a developer supply unit including a nozzle having a liquid contact surface facing a surface of the wafer and an ejection port opening to the liquid contact surface, and a controller. The controller is configured to: while the wafer rotates, execute a control of causing a developer to be ejected from the ejection port and moving the nozzle from an circumference side to a rotation center side of the wafer; after execution of the control, execute a control of moving the nozzle from the rotation center side to the outer circumference side of the wafer; and during execution of the control, execute a control of gradually reducing the rotation speed of the wafer as the center of the liquid contact surface approaches the outer circumference.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 5, 2018
    Date of Patent: July 23, 2019
    Assignee: Tokyo Electron Limited
    Inventors: Takeshi Shimoaoki, Yusaku Hashimoto, Shogo Inaba
  • Patent number: 10359705
    Abstract: A method including measuring a value of a directly measureable processing parameter of a patterning process from a portion of a substrate produced by the patterning process; obtaining a relationship between the directly measureable processing parameter and a not directly measureable processing parameter; and determining a value of the not directly measureable processing parameter from the value of the directly measureable processing parameter and the relationship.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 21, 2016
    Date of Patent: July 23, 2019
    Assignee: ASML Netherlands B.V.
    Inventor: Te-Sheng Wang
  • Patent number: 10359709
    Abstract: Provided are an exposure apparatus and a prevention method and system for image offset of the exposure apparatus. The dust cover which is made of transparent material and arranged and arranged at one end of the bearing connected to the lifter enables to check whether the bearing is abraded via manual vision or machine vision, thereby enhancing the yield of the glass substrates achieved by photoetching in the photo process and thus improving the production efficiency of the photo process.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 31, 2017
    Date of Patent: July 23, 2019
    Assignees: HKC CORPORATION LIMITED, Chongqing HKC Optoelectronics Technology Co., Ltd.
    Inventor: Chun-bin Wen
  • Patent number: 10353284
    Abstract: The present disclosure provides a lithographic reticle system comprising a reticle, a first pellicle membrane mounted in front of the reticle, and a second pellicle membrane mounted in front of the first pellicle membrane, wherein the first pellicle membrane is arranged between the reticle and the second pellicle membrane, and wherein the second pellicle membrane is releasably mounted in relation to the first pellicle membrane and the reticle.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 15, 2018
    Date of Patent: July 16, 2019
    Assignees: IMEC VZW, IMEC USA NANOELECTRONICS DESIGN CENTER
    Inventors: Rik Jonckheere, Cedric Huyghebaert, Emily Gallagher
  • Patent number: 10353297
    Abstract: A motion stage device, an exposure device and a lithography machine are disclosed. The motion stage device includes: Y-direction motors (203), a mover of each Y-direction motor (203) movable in a horizontal Y-direction; X-direction motors provided on X-direction guide rails (105), the X-direction guide rails (105) is in connection with the movers of the Y-direction motors (203) and movable in the horizontal Y-direction under actuation of the Y-direction motors (203), the X-direction motors having movers (107b) movable in a horizontal X-direction; an inner frame (102), supporting the X-direction guide rails (105); and a motion stage (108, 106), disposed on the movers (107b) of the X-direction motor. This motion stage device possesses improved modal and vibration characteristics because of a reduced load on the Y-direction motors (203).
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 28, 2016
    Date of Patent: July 16, 2019
    Assignee: Shanghai Micro Electronics Equipment (Group) Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Lili Ge, Yuebin Zhu
  • Patent number: 10353296
    Abstract: An immersion lithographic apparatus has adaptations to prevent or reduce bubble formation in one or more gaps in the substrate table by preventing bubbles escaping from the gap into the beam path and/or extracting bubbles that may form in the gap.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 13, 2018
    Date of Patent: July 16, 2019
    Assignee: ASML NETHERLANDS B.V.
    Inventors: Bob Streefkerk, Sjoerd Nicolaas Lambertus Donders, Roelof Frederik De Graaf, Christiaan Alexander Hoogendam, Martinus Hendrikus Antonius Leenders, Jeroen Johannes Sophia Maria Mertens, Michel Riepen
  • Patent number: 10345709
    Abstract: A method including: obtaining a measurement of a metrology target on a substrate processed using a patterning process, the measurement having been obtained using measurement radiation; and deriving a parameter of interest of the patterning process from the measurement, wherein the parameter of interest is corrected by a stack difference parameter, the stack difference parameter representing an un-designed difference in physical configuration between adjacent periodic structures of the target or between the metrology target and another adjacent target on the substrate.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 11, 2018
    Date of Patent: July 9, 2019
    Assignee: ASML Netherlands B.V.
    Inventors: Arie Jeffrey Den Boef, Kaustuve Bhattacharyya
  • Patent number: 10345716
    Abstract: A method for fault detection in a fabrication system is provided. The method includes transferring a reticle carrier containing a reticle from an original position to a destination position. The method further includes detecting environmental condition in the reticle carrier during the transfer of the reticle carrier using a metrology tool that is positioned at the reticle carrier. The method also includes issuing a warning when the detected environmental condition is outside a range of acceptable values.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 23, 2018
    Date of Patent: July 9, 2019
    Assignee: TAIWAN SEMICONDUCTOR MANUFACTURING CO., LTD.
    Inventors: Yao-Yuan Shang, Kuo-Shu Tseng, Yen-Yu Chen, Chun-Chih Lin, Yi-Ming Dai
  • Patent number: 10345711
    Abstract: A method for determining an offset between a center of a substrate and a center of a depression in a chuck includes providing a test substrate to the depression, the test substrate having a dimension smaller than a dimension of the depression, measuring a position of an alignment mark of the test substrate while in the depression, and determining the offset between the center of the substrate and the center of the depression from the position of the alignment mark.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 21, 2017
    Date of Patent: July 9, 2019
    Assignee: ASML Netherlands B.V.
    Inventors: Christiaan Alexander Hoogendam, Gerrit Johannes Nijmeijer, Minne Cuperus, Petrus Anton Willem Cornelia Maria Van Eijck
  • Patent number: 10345717
    Abstract: A lithographic apparatus includes an optical sensor, a movable body, a support, a deflector system, a first drive system and a second drive system. The movable body is moveable relative to the sensor. The support is for holding the sensor. The first drive system is arranged to move the movable body relative to the sensor. The second drive system is arranged to move the first drive system relative to the sensor. The second drive system is arranged to move the deflector system relative to the sensor. A disturbance is induced by a movement of the movable body. The deflector system is arranged to create a deflecting area for reflecting the disturbance away from the support.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 20, 2018
    Date of Patent: July 9, 2019
    Assignee: ASML Netherlands B.V.
    Inventors: G√ľnes Nakiboglu, Suzanne Johanna Antonetta Geertruda Cosijns, Anne Willemijn Bertine Quist, Lukasz Sosniak, Frank Johannes Jacobus Van Boxtel, Engelbertus Antonius Fransiscus Van Der Pasch
  • Patent number: 10331045
    Abstract: A position measurement system to measure a position of an object relative to a reference, the position measurement system including two interferometers, wherein each interferometer is configured to form a reference beam and a measurement beam from input radiation and to combine the reference beam and the measurement beam to provide output radiation to be delivered to a detector, wherein each interferometer is configured such that the reference beam is formed by reflection of input radiation from a reflective element, and such that the measurement beam is formed by diffraction of input radiation from a grating on the object, and wherein the reference beam and the measurement beam are parallel to each other.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 26, 2016
    Date of Patent: June 25, 2019
    Assignee: ASML Netherlands B.V.
    Inventors: Engelbertus Antonius Fransiscus Van Der Pasch, Emiel Jozef Melanie Eussen, Robbert Edgar Van Leeuwen
  • Patent number: 10330903
    Abstract: An imaging optical unit for projection lithography has a plurality of mirrors for guiding imaging light from an object field into an image field. The object field is spanned by a first, larger object field dimension and along a second, smaller object field dimension. The imaging optical unit has at least two GI mirrors and at least one NI mirror. The NI mirror is arranged between two GI mirrors in the imaging light beam path. A used reflection surface of the NI mirror has an aspect ratio between a surface dimension along a first reflection surface coordinate and a surface dimension along a second reflection coordinate parallel to the second object field dimension. The aspect ratio being less than 4.5. An imaging optical unit with reduced production costs emerges.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 30, 2018
    Date of Patent: June 25, 2019
    Assignee: Carl Zeiss SMT GmbH
    Inventors: Alexander Wolf, Hans-Juergen Rostalski
  • Patent number: 10331034
    Abstract: A substrate processing apparatus includes a spin chuck that holds a substrate, a processing liquid supply unit that supplies a first processing liquid having first specific gravity and a second processing liquid having second specific gravity smaller than the first specific gravity to a surface to be processed of the substrate held by the spin chuck, a collection tank that stores the used first and second processing liquids that have been supplied to the substrate, and a processing liquid separating mechanism that separates the first processing liquid and the second processing liquid based on specific gravity, the first and second processing liquids being stored in the collection tank.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 15, 2016
    Date of Patent: June 25, 2019
    Assignee: SCREEN Holdings Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Yuji Tanaka, Masaya Asai, Masahiko Harumoto, Koji Kaneyama
  • Patent number: 10331040
    Abstract: In a method of controlling a lithographic apparatus, historical performance measurements are used to calculate a process model relating to a lithographic process. Current positions of a plurality of alignment marks provided on a current substrate are measured and used to calculate a substrate model relating to a current substrate. Additionally, historical position measurements obtained at the time of processing the prior substrates are used with the historical performance measurements to calculate a model mapping. The model mapping is applied to modify the substrate model. The lithographic apparatus is controlled using the process model and the modified substrate model together. Overlay performance is improved by avoiding over- or under-correction of correlated components of the process model and the substrate model. The model mapping may be a subspace mapping, and dimensionality of the model mapping may be reduced, before it is used.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 15, 2016
    Date of Patent: June 25, 2019
    Assignee: ASML Netherlands B.V.
    Inventors: Edo Maria Hulsebos, Patricius Aloysius Jacobus Tinnemans, Ralph Brinkhof, Pieter Jacob Heres, Jorn Kjeld Lucas, Loek Johannes Petrus Verhees, Ingrid Margaretha Ardina Van Donkelaar, Franciscus Godefridus Casper Bijnen
  • Patent number: 10331047
    Abstract: A porous member is used in a liquid removal system of an immersion lithographic projection apparatus to smooth uneven flows. A pressure differential across the porous member may be maintained at below the bubble point of the porous member so that a single-phase liquid flow is obtained. Alternatively, the porous member may be used to reduce unevenness in a two-phase flow.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 28, 2017
    Date of Patent: June 25, 2019
    Assignee: ASML NETHERLANDS B.V.
    Inventors: Nicolaas Rudolf Kemper, Henrikus Herman Marie Cox, Sjoerd Nicolaas Lambertus Donders, Roelof Frederik De Graaf, Christiaan Alexander Hoogendam, Nicolaas Ten Kate, Jeroen Johannes Sophia Maria Mertens, Frits Van Der Meulen, Franciscus Johannes Herman Maria Teunissen, Jan-Gerard Cornelis Van Der Toorn, Martinus Cornelis Maria Verhagen, Stefan Philip Christiaan Belfroid, Johannes Petrus Maria Smeulers, Herman Vogel
  • Patent number: 10324380
    Abstract: A microlithographic projection exposure apparatus (10) includes a projection lens (26) that images an object field (22) arranged in a mask plane (24) onto a substrate (28) during exposure operation of the projection exposure apparatus, and an illumination system (16) that has: an exposure illumination beam path (44) for radiating illumination radiation (14) onto the object field on the illumination side with respect to the mask plane, a measurement illumination beam path (48) for irradiating a measurement structure (54) arranged in the mask plane with the illumination radiation, and a scattering structure (50) arranged on the illumination side with respect to the mask plane and outside the exposure illumination beam path. The measurement illumination beam path extends via the scattering structure and runs rectilinearly between the scattering structure and the mask plane.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 12, 2018
    Date of Patent: June 18, 2019
    Assignee: CARL ZEISS SMT GMBH
    Inventors: Stig Bieling, Helmut Haidner