Detection of Nano-particles in Semiconductor Water
By Slava Libman et al.
The International Technology Roadmap for Semiconductors (ITRS) ultrapure water (UPW*) technical working group (1) has defined particle detection below 50 nanometers (nm) to be one of the more important challenges in UPW technology. Particles introduced during semiconductor manufacturing processes can cause a variety of wafer defects, including the following: Micro masking for critical dimension etch processes, thus driving the need for smaller particle detection. Bridging and gaps in lithographic features, traditionally driving the critical particle size. Chemical effects caused by the composition of the particles (such as metals or sodium chloride salts). Such effects can occur at smaller particle sizes than the critical particle size since the defect cause is not only size-driven. Because of the inability to detect particle composition, these effects are only discussed as a theoretical possibility. However, our inability to detect the chemical composition of particles could become a critical roadblock to modeling particle deposition on wafers.
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