Motorola announces ‘revolution’ in IC lithography

Will break 0.1 mircon barrier "early in the next millennium". Wow...

Motorola has developed two techniques that can achieve feature sizes on integrated circuits below 100 nanometers using IC masks in both electron projection and extreme ultra-violet type lithography, the company announced yesterday. Motorola claims to have "demonstrated the capability of yielding" large area masks "capable of processing practical chip sizes". The electron projection set-up consists of a thin membrane with an overlaid patterned surface to scatter electrons and create an image on the wafer. The technique for extreme ultra violet (EUV) mask processing involves a reflective mask blank upon which a thin absorbing material is patterned to create an image. "The industry has gone about as far as it can with today's chrome on glass technology using phase shifting and optical proximity resolution enhancement techniques," said Joe Mogab, manager of Advanced Process Development. "We think this new technology will allow us to finally go below 0.1 micron level processing." Motorola expects these new technologies to yield masks to print very small-featured ICs "early in the next millennium." Because of the "revolutionary nature" of the technology, "it will take time to develop an advanced manufacturing process capable of handling this new approach," the company notes. Mogab noted that Motorola is unlikely to manufacture its own masks. "Our objective is to develop proficiency in the fabrication of these masks. Ultimately we will transfer the processes to mask suppliers," he reckons. ®

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