Patents by Inventor Toshifumi Kimba

Toshifumi Kimba has filed for patents to protect the following inventions. This listing includes patent applications that are pending as well as patents that have already been granted by the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO).

  • Publication number: 20190118331
    Abstract: There is disclosed a polishing apparatus which allows for easy replacement of a light source with another type of light source. The light-source assembly includes: a base fixed to a polishing table and coupled to a light-emitting transmission line; and a light-source module having a lamp for emitting light. The light-source module is removably attached to the base. The base is a common base which is adapted to any of a plurality of light-source modules of different types including the light-source module. The base includes a positioning structure which achieves positioning of the light-source module relative to the base.
    Type: Application
    Filed: October 16, 2018
    Publication date: April 25, 2019
    Inventors: Nobuyuki TAKAHASHI, Toshifumi KIMBA, Masaki KINOSHITA
  • Patent number: 10256104
    Abstract: The present invention relates to a film-thickness measuring method for detecting a film thickness by analyzing optical information contained in a reflected light from a substrate. The film-thickness measuring method includes producing a spectral waveform indicating a relationship between intensity and wavelength of reflected light from a substrate; performing Fourier transform processing on the spectral waveform to determine strengths of frequency components and corresponding film thicknesses; determining local maximum values (M1, M2) of the strengths of the frequency components; and selecting, according to a preset selection rule, one film thickness from film thicknesses (t1, t2) corresponding respectively to the local maximum values (M1, M2). The selection rule is either to select an N-th largest film thickness or to select an N-th smallest film thickness, and N is a predetermined natural number.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 5, 2016
    Date of Patent: April 9, 2019
    Assignee: EBARA CORPORATION
    Inventor: Toshifumi Kimba
  • Publication number: 20190022820
    Abstract: A polishing apparatus which can measure a film thickness with high accuracy without affecting a polishing rate of a wafer is disclosed. The polishing apparatus includes: a polishing head configured to press a wafer against a polishing pad; an illuminating fiber having a distal end disposed in a flow passage formed in the polishing table; a spectrometer configured to resolve reflected light from the wafer in accordance with wavelength and measure an intensity of the reflected light at each of wavelengths; a light-receiving fiber having a distal end disposed in the flow passage; a liquid supply line communicating with the flow passage; a gas supply line communicating with the flow passage; a liquid supply valve attached to the liquid supply line; a gas supply valve attached to the gas supply line; and an operation controller configured to control operations of the liquid supply valve and the gas supply valve.
    Type: Application
    Filed: July 18, 2018
    Publication date: January 24, 2019
    Inventors: Toshifumi KIMBA, Masaki KINOSHITA, Yoichi SHIOKAWA
  • Publication number: 20190017808
    Abstract: A film-thickness measuring apparatus includes: a light source; an illuminating fiber coupled to the light source and having a distal end disposed at a predetermined position in a wafer supporting structure; a spectrometer configured to decompose reflected light from a wafer in accordance with wavelength and measure an intensity of the reflected light at each of wavelengths; a first light-receiving fiber having a distal end disposed at the predetermined position; a second light-receiving fiber having a distal end which is disposed at the predetermined position and is adjacent to the distal end of the first light-receiving fiber; a processor configured to determine a film thickness of the wafer based on a spectral waveform indicating a relationship between the intensity of the reflected light and the wavelength; and an optical-path selecting mechanism configured to optically connect and disconnect the second light-receiving fiber and the spectrometer.
    Type: Application
    Filed: July 10, 2018
    Publication date: January 17, 2019
    Inventor: Toshifumi KIMBA
  • Publication number: 20180339392
    Abstract: A polishing apparatus capable of accurately determining a service life of a light source, and further capable of accurately measuring a film thickness of a substrate, such as a wafer, without calibrating an optical film-thickness measuring device, is disclosed.
    Type: Application
    Filed: May 14, 2018
    Publication date: November 29, 2018
    Inventors: Toshifumi KIMBA, Masaki KINOSHITA
  • Patent number: 10124462
    Abstract: A polishing apparatus capable of measuring a film thickness of a wafer using a plurality of optical sensors, without using an optical-path switching device for optical fibers, is disclosed. The polishing apparatus includes: an illuminating fiber having a plurality of distal ends arranged at different locations in a polishing table; a spectrometer configured to break up reflected light from a wafer in accordance with wavelength and measure an intensity of the reflected light at each of wavelengths; a light-receiving fiber having a plurality of distal ends arranged at the different locations in the polishing table; and a processor configured to generate a spectral waveform indicating a relationship between the intensity and wavelength of the reflected light and determine a film thickness based on the spectral waveform.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 1, 2016
    Date of Patent: November 13, 2018
    Assignee: EBARA CORPORATION
    Inventor: Toshifumi Kimba
  • Publication number: 20180229346
    Abstract: A polishing apparatus for polishing a substrate is provided. The polishing apparatus includes: a polishing table holding a polishing pad; a top ring configured to press the substrate against the polishing pad; first and second optical heads each configured to apply the light to the substrate and to receive reflected light from the substrate; spectroscopes each configured to measure at each wavelength an intensity of the reflected light received; and a processor configured to produce a spectrum indicating a relationship between intensity and wavelength of the reflected light. The first optical head is arranged so as to face a center of the substrate, and the second optical head is arranged so as to face a peripheral portion of the substrate.
    Type: Application
    Filed: April 10, 2018
    Publication date: August 16, 2018
    Inventors: Itsuki KOBATA, Yoichi KOBAYASHI, Katsutoshi ONO, Masaki KINOSHITA, Toshifumi KIMBA
  • Patent number: 9969048
    Abstract: A polishing apparatus for polishing a substrate is provided. The polishing apparatus includes: a polishing table holding a polishing pad; a top ring configured to press the substrate against the polishing pad; first and second optical heads each configured to apply the light to the substrate and to receive reflected light from the substrate; spectroscopes each configured to measure at each wavelength an intensity of the reflected light received; and a processor configured to produce a spectrum indicating a relationship between intensity and wavelength of the reflected light. The first optical head is arranged so as to face a center of the substrate, and the second optical head is arranged so as to face a peripheral portion of the substrate.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 24, 2015
    Date of Patent: May 15, 2018
    Assignee: Ebara Corporation
    Inventors: Itsuki Kobata, Yoichi Kobayashi, Katsutoshi Ono, Masaki Kinoshita, Toshifumi Kimba
  • Publication number: 20180130667
    Abstract: The present invention relates to a film-thickness measuring method for detecting a film thickness by analyzing optical information contained in a reflected light from a substrate. The film-thickness measuring method includes producing a spectral waveform indicating a relationship between intensity and wavelength of reflected light from a substrate; performing Fourier transform processing on the spectral waveform to determine strengths of frequency components and corresponding film thicknesses; determining local maximum values (M1, M2) of the strengths of the frequency components; and selecting, according to a preset selection rule, one film thickness from film thicknesses (t1, t2) corresponding respectively to the local maximum values (M1, M2). The selection rule is either to select an N-th largest film thickness or to select an N-th smallest film thickness, and N is a predetermined natural number.
    Type: Application
    Filed: April 5, 2016
    Publication date: May 10, 2018
    Inventor: Toshifumi KIMBA
  • Patent number: 9842783
    Abstract: A polishing method capable of obtaining an accurate thickness of a silicon layer during polishing of a substrate and determining an accurate polishing end point of the substrate based on the thickness of the silicon layer obtained. The method includes: calculating relative reflectance by dividing the measured intensity of the infrared ray by predetermined reference intensity; producing spectral waveform representing relationship between the relative reflectance and wavelength of the infrared ray; performing a Fourier transform process on the spectral waveform to determine a thickness of the silicon layer and a corresponding strength of frequency component; and determining a polishing end point of the substrate based on a point of time when the determined thickness of the silicon layer has reached a predetermined target value.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 20, 2016
    Date of Patent: December 12, 2017
    Assignee: EBARA CORPORATION
    Inventor: Toshifumi Kimba
  • Publication number: 20170103928
    Abstract: A polishing method capable of obtaining an accurate thickness of a silicon layer during polishing of a substrate and determining an accurate polishing end point of the substrate based on the thickness of the silicon layer obtained. The method includes: calculating relative reflectance by dividing the measured intensity of the infrared ray by predetermined reference intensity; producing spectral waveform representing relationship between the relative reflectance and wavelength of the infrared ray; performing a Fourier transform process on the spectral waveform to determine a thickness of the silicon layer and a corresponding strength of frequency component; and determining a polishing end point of the substrate based on a point of time when the determined thickness of the silicon layer has reached a predetermined target value.
    Type: Application
    Filed: December 20, 2016
    Publication date: April 13, 2017
    Inventor: Toshifumi KIMBA
  • Patent number: 9604337
    Abstract: A method of polishing a substrate is disclosed. The method includes irradiating the substrate with light; measuring intensity of the reflected light; producing spectral waveform representing relationship between relative reflectance and wavelength of the light; performing a Fourier transform process on the spectral waveform to determine a thickness of the film and a corresponding strength of frequency component; determining whether the determined thickness of the film is reliable or not by comparing the strength of frequency component with a threshold value; calculating a defective data rate representing a proportion of the number of unreliable measured values to the total number of measured values; and changing the threshold value based on the defective data rate.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 13, 2016
    Date of Patent: March 28, 2017
    Assignee: Ebara Corporation
    Inventor: Toshifumi Kimba
  • Patent number: 9561577
    Abstract: A polishing method capable of obtaining an accurate thickness of a silicon layer during polishing of a substrate and determining an accurate polishing end point of the substrate based on the thickness of the silicon layer obtained. The method includes: calculating relative reflectance by dividing the measured intensity of the infrared ray by predetermined reference intensity; producing spectral waveform representing relationship between the relative reflectance and wavelength of the infrared ray; performing a Fourier transform process on the spectral waveform to determine a thickness of the silicon layer and a corresponding strength of frequency component; and determining a polishing end point of the substrate based on a point of time when the determined thickness of the silicon layer has reached a predetermined target value.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 23, 2012
    Date of Patent: February 7, 2017
    Assignee: EBARA CORPORATION
    Inventor: Toshifumi Kimba
  • Publication number: 20160354894
    Abstract: A polishing apparatus capable of measuring a film thickness of a wafer using a plurality of optical sensors, without using an optical-path switching device for optical fibers, is disclosed. The polishing apparatus includes: an illuminating fiber having a plurality of distal ends arranged at different locations in a polishing table; a spectrometer configured to break up reflected light from a wafer in accordance with wavelength and measure an intensity of the reflected light at each of wavelengths; a light-receiving fiber having a plurality of distal ends arranged at the different locations in the polishing table; and a processor configured to generate a spectral waveform indicating a relationship between the intensity and wavelength of the reflected light and determine a film thickness based on the spectral waveform.
    Type: Application
    Filed: June 1, 2016
    Publication date: December 8, 2016
    Inventor: Toshifumi KIMBA
  • Publication number: 20160325399
    Abstract: A polishing apparatus for polishing a substrate is provided. The polishing apparatus includes: a polishing table holding a polishing pad; a top ring configured to press the substrate against the polishing pad; first and second optical heads each configured to apply the light to the substrate and to receive reflected light from the substrate; spectroscopes each configured to measure at each wavelength an intensity of the reflected light received; and a processor configured to produce a spectrum indicating a relationship between intensity and wavelength of the reflected light. The first optical head is arranged so as to face a center of the substrate, and the second optical head is arranged so as to face a peripheral portion of the substrate.
    Type: Application
    Filed: July 20, 2016
    Publication date: November 10, 2016
    Inventors: Itsuki KOBATA, Yoichi KOBAYASHI, Katsutoshi ONO, Masaki KINOSHITA, Toshifumi KIMBA
  • Patent number: 9406480
    Abstract: A substrate is irradiated by primary electrons and secondary electrons generated from the substrate are detected by a detector. A reference die is placed on the stage to obtain a pattern matching template image including feature coordinates of the reference die. A pattern matching is performed with an arbitrary die in a row or column including the reference die using the template image to obtain feature coordinates of the arbitrary die. An angle of misalignment is calculated between the direction of the row or column including the reference die and one of the directions of movement of the substrate on the basis of the feature coordinates of the arbitrary die and those of the reference die. The stage is rotated to correct the angle of misalignment to conform the direction of the row or column including the reference die with the one of the directions of movement of the substrate.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 14, 2015
    Date of Patent: August 2, 2016
    Assignee: EBARA CORPORATION
    Inventors: Nobuharu Noji, Tohru Satake, Hirosi Sobukawa, Toshifumi Kimba, Masahiro Hatakeyama, Shoji Yoshikawa, Takeshi Murakami, Kenji Watanabe, Tsutomu Karimata, Kenichi Suematsu, Yutaka Tabe, Ryo Tajima, Keiichi Tohyama
  • Patent number: 9401293
    Abstract: A polishing apparatus for polishing a substrate includes a polishing table holding a polishing pad, a top ring configured to press the substrate against the polishing pad, and first and second optical heads each configured to apply the light to the substrate and to receive reflected light from the substrate. The polishing apparatus also includes spectroscopes each configured to measure at each wavelength an intensity of the reflected light received, and a processor configured to produce a spectrum indicating a relationship between intensity and wavelength of the reflected light. The first optical head is arranged so as to face a center of the substrate, and the second optical head is arranged so as to face a peripheral portion of the substrate.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 20, 2011
    Date of Patent: July 26, 2016
    Assignee: EBARA CORPORATION
    Inventors: Itsuki Kobata, Yoichi Kobayashi, Katsutoshi Ono, Masaki Kinoshita, Toshifumi Kimba
  • Patent number: 9368314
    Abstract: An inspection apparatus by an electron beam comprises: an electron-optical device 70 having an electron-optical system for irradiating the object with a primary electron beam from an electron beam source, and a detector for detecting the secondary electron image projected by the electron-optical systems; a stage system 50 for holding and moving the object relative to the electron-optical system; a mini-environment chamber 20 for supplying a clean gas to the object to prevent dust from contacting the object; a working chamber 31 for accommodating the stage device, the working chamber being controllable so as to have a vacuum atmosphere; at least two loading chambers 41, 42 disposed between the mini-environment chamber and the working chamber, adapted to be independently controllable so as to have a vacuum atmosphere; and a loader 60 for transferring the object to the stage system through the loading chambers.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 30, 2014
    Date of Patent: June 14, 2016
    Assignee: EBARA CORPORATION
    Inventors: Mamoru Nakasuji, Nobuharu Noji, Tohru Satake, Masahiro Hatakeyama, Toshifumi Kimba, Hirosi Sobukawa, Shoji Yoshikawa, Takeshi Murakami, Kenji Watanabe, Tsutomu Karimata, Shin Oowada, Mutsumi Saito, Yuichiro Yamazaki, Takamitsu Nagai, Ichirota Nagahama
  • Publication number: 20160129546
    Abstract: A method of polishing a substrate is disclosed. The method includes irradiating the substrate with light; measuring intensity of the reflected light; producing spectral waveform representing relationship between relative reflectance and wavelength of the light; performing a Fourier transform process on the spectral waveform to determine a thickness of the film and a corresponding strength of frequency component; determining whether the determined thickness of the film is reliable or not by comparing the strength of frequency component with a threshold value; calculating a defective data rate representing a proportion of the number of unreliable measured values to the total number of measured values; and changing the threshold value based on the defective data rate.
    Type: Application
    Filed: January 13, 2016
    Publication date: May 12, 2016
    Inventor: Toshifumi KIMBA
  • Patent number: 9266214
    Abstract: A method of polishing a substrate is disclosed. The method includes irradiating the substrate with light; measuring intensity of the reflected light; producing spectral waveform representing relationship between relative reflectance and wavelength of the light; performing a Fourier transform process on the spectral waveform to determine a thickness of the film and a corresponding strength of frequency component; determining whether the determined thickness of the film is reliable or not by comparing the strength of frequency component with a threshold value; calculating a defective data rate representing a proportion of the number of unreliable measured values to the total number of measured values; and changing the threshold value based on the defective data rate.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 23, 2014
    Date of Patent: February 23, 2016
    Assignee: Ebara Corporation
    Inventor: Toshifumi Kimba