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Material Development for Double exposure and Double patterning (MD3)
Start date: Dec 1, 2007, End date: Nov 30, 2009 PROJECT  FINISHED 

Double patterning lithography has been identified as one of the most promising solutions for the 32nm node patterning. This technique refers to a two step process where a first pattern is exposed, developed and sometimes etched and a second pattern is also exposed, developed and transferred on the top of the first one. For the moment, several issues still need to be addressed for enabling the Double Patterning process in production such as layout decomposition, topography at wafer level, overlay control, Line Edge Roughness and process throughput. For example, the conventional double patterning process requires two different exposure and etching steps which cumbersomely reduce productivity and increase the cost of ownership. In that perspective, MD3 aims to suppress the additional etching or exposure steps by developing new strategies for double pattering or double exposure. Three novel approaches will be evaluated: dual layer approach, pattern doubling strategy and double exposure technique. Each strategy will be compared to a reference double patterning process in terms of technical performances as well as cost of ownership. This requires some important material development which must be supported by appropriate simulations and patterning evaluation. Moreover, adapted integration schemes must be developed to validate the possibility of a transfer to the industry. In order to reach its objectives, MD3 will gather a multidisciplinary team of 7 partners with specific skills and strong background in photoresist development, lithography simulation, lithography process development and characterization and etching process development. To have double patterning or double exposure process ready on time for the 32nm production in 2010, this project is planned over 2 years with a total budget of 4.6ME.

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