Manufacturing Bits: June 2


X-raying chocolate X-ray scattering is a next-generation metrology technology. Using an X-ray source, the technology can be used for imaging complex structures and films in three dimensions. It can be used in various applications, such as biology and semiconductors. Here’s another surprising application: chocolate. Using X-ray scattering, Deutsches Elektronen-Synchrotron (DESY) has helped... » read more

Waiting For Next-Gen Metrology


Chipmakers continue to march down the various process nodes, but the industry will require new breakthroughs to extend IC scaling at 10nm and beyond. In fact, the industry will require innovations in at least two main areas—patterning and the [getkc id="36" comment="Interconnect"]. There are other areas of concern, but one technology is quickly rising near the top of the list—metrology.... » read more

Gaps In Metrology Could Impact Yield


For some time, chipmakers have been developing new and complex chip architectures, such as 3D NAND, finFETs and stacked die. But manufacturing these types of chips is no simple task. It requires a robust fab flow to enable new IC designs with good yields. In fact, yield is becoming a more critical part of the flow. Yield is a broad term that means different things to different parts of the ... » read more

Challenges Mount In Inspection And Metrology


Chipmakers are moving full speed ahead toward smaller process nodes, thereby driving up the costs and complexities in chip manufacturing. The migrations also are putting enormous stress on nearly all points of the fab flow, including a critical but unsung part of the business—process control. Process control involves 20 or so different segments in the inspection and metrology arena. Genera... » read more

Waiting For 3D Metrology


By Mark LaPedus Over the years, suppliers of metrology equipment have managed to meet the requirements for conventional planar chips. But tool vendors now find themselves behind in the emerging 3D chip era, prompting the urgent need for a new class of 3D metrology gear. 3D is a catch-all phrase that includes a range of new architectures, such as finFET transistors, 3D NAND and stacked-die ... » read more

Wanted: New Metrology Funding Models


By Mark LaPedus The shift toward the 20nm node and beyond will require new and major breakthroughs in chip manufacturing. Most of the attention centers around lithography, gate stacks, interconnects, strain engineering and design-for-manufacturing (DFM). Lost in the conversation are two other critical but overlooked pieces in the manufacturing puzzle—wafer inspection and metrology. ... » read more