What Happened To DSA?

Directed self-assembly (DSA) was until recently a rising star in the next-generation lithography (NGL) landscape, but the technology has recently lost some of its luster, if not its momentum. So what happened? Nearly five years ago, an obscure patterning technology called [gettech id="31046" t_name="DSA"] burst onto the scene and began to generate momentum in the industry. At about that t... » read more

Inside Multi-Beam E-Beam Lithography

Semiconductor Engineering sat down with David Lam, chairman of Multibeam, a developer of multi-beam e-beam tools for direct-write lithography applications. Lam is also a venture capitalist. He founded Lam Research in 1980, but left as an employee in 1985. What follows are excerpts of that conversation. SE: How has the equipment business changed over the years and what’s the state of the i... » read more

Issues And Options At 5nm

While the foundries are ramping up their processes for the 16nm/14nm node, vendors are also busy developing technologies for 10nm and beyond. In fact, chipmakers are finalizing their 10nm process offerings, but they are still weighing the technology options for 7nm. And if that isn’t enough, IC makers are beginning to look at the options at 5nm and beyond. Today, chipmakers can see a p... » read more

What Happened To Next-Gen Lithography?

Chipmakers continue to march down the process technology curve. Using today’s optical lithography and multiple patterning, the semiconductor industry is scaling its leading-edge devices far beyond what was once considered possible. The question is how far can the industry extend 193nm immersion [getkc id="80" comment="lithography"] and multiple patterning before these technologies become t... » read more

One-On-One: Linyong Pang

Semiconductor Engineering sat down to discuss trends in the lithography and photomask business with Linyong “Leo” Pang, the new chief product officer and executive vice president at D2S, which focuses on model-based mask data preparation as well as other mask writing technologies. What follows are excerpts of that conversation. SE: Before you arrived at D2S you were at Luminescent, whic... » read more

Waiting For Next-Generation Lithography

Nearly 30 years ago, optical lithography was supposed to hit the wall at the magical 1 micron barrier, prompting the need for a new patterning technology such as direct-write electron beam and X-ray lithography. At that time, however, the industry was able to push optical lithography for volume chip production at the 1-micron node and beyond. This, in turn, effectively killed direct-write e-... » read more

Litho Roadmap Remains Cloudy

By Mark LaPedus For some time, the lithography roadmap has been cloudy. Optical lithography has extended much further than expected. And delays with the various next-generation lithography (NGL) technologies have forced the industry to re-write the roadmap on multiple occasions. Today, there is more uncertainty than ever in lithography. Until recently, for example, leading-edge logic chipma... » read more

Design-For-DSA Industry Begins To Assemble

By Mark LaPedus The industry is aggressively pursuing directed self-assembly (DSA) as an alternative patterning technology for future chip designs. DSA, which enables fine pitches through the use of block copolymers, is in the R&D pilot line stage today. The fab tools, process flows and materials are basically ready, but there are still several challenges to bring the technology from th... » read more

Optical Lithography, Take Two

By Mark LaPedus It’s the worst-kept secret in the industry. Extreme ultraviolet (EUV) lithography has missed the initial stages of the 10nm logic and 1xnm NAND flash nodes. Chipmakers hope to insert EUV by the latter stages of 10nm or by 7nm, but vendors are not counting on EUV in the near term and are preparing their back-up plans. Barring a breakthrough with EUV or other technology, IC ... » read more