Improving SAQP Patterning Yield Using Virtual Fabrication And Advanced Process Control


Advanced logic scaling has created some difficult technical challenges, including a requirement for highly dense patterning. Imec recently confronted this challenge, by working toward the use of Metal 2 (M2) line patterning with a 16 nm half-pitch for their 7nm node (equivalent to a 5nm foundry node). Self-Aligned Quadruple Patterning (SAQP) was investigated as an alternative path to Extreme Ul... » read more

Creating Higher Density 3D NAND Structures


3D NAND flash memory has enabled a new generation of non-volatile solid-state storage useful in nearly every electronic device imaginable. 3D NAND can achieve data densities exceeding those of 2D NAND structures, even when fabricated on later generation technology nodes. The methods used to increase storage capacity come with potentially significant tradeoffs in memory storage, structural sta... » read more

Analyzing Worst-Case Silicon Photonic Device Performance Through Process Modeling And Optical Simulation


Silicon photonics is an emerging and rapidly-expanding design platform that promises to enable higher-bandwidth communication and other applications. One of the best qualities of silicon photonics is its ability to leverage existing CMOS fabrication equipment and process flows. However, this means that it is subject to the same process defects and variations. Previous blog posts [References 1,2... » read more

3D NAND: Challenges Beyond 96-Layer Memory Arrays


Unlike scaling practices in 2D NAND technology, the direct way to reduce bit costs and increase chip density in 3D NAND is by adding layers. In 2013, Samsung shipped the first V-NAND product using 24 layers and MLC [1]. Five years later, in 2018, vendors of 3D-NAND have all announced production plans for 96-Layer NAND using TLC [2]. According to recent news reports, vendors are already working ... » read more

A Review of Silicon Photonics


With the end of Moore’s Law rapidly approaching—some say it's already here—new applications of older technologies are gaining attention. One specific area of interest is photonics. The National Center for Optics and Photonic Education defines photonics as the technology of generating and harnessing light and other forms of radiant energy whose quantum unit is the photon. It can also be... » read more

Benefits And New Applications For FD-SOI


Over the past decades, transistor feature size has continuously decreased, leading to an increase in performance and a reduction in power consumption. Consumers have reaped the benefits, with superior electronic devices that have become increasingly useful, valuable, faster and more efficient. In recent years, as transistor feature size has shrunk below 10nm, it has become progressively more di... » read more

Practical Methods To Overcome The Challenges Of 3D Logic Design


What should you do If you don’t have enough room on your floor to store all your old boxes? Luckily, we live in a 3D world, and you can start stacking them on top of each other. The Challenge: How can we shrink logic devices? Logic designers are currently facing even bigger challenges than you might be having in tidying up your storage area. Not only are logic cells highly packed together... » read more

Transistor-Level Performance Evaluation Based On Wafer-Level Process Modeling


Three years ago, I wrote a blog entitled “Linking Virtual Wafer Fabrication Modeling with Device-level TCAD Simulation,” in which I described the seamless connection between the SEMulator3D virtual wafer fabrication software platform and external third-party TCAD software. I’m now happy to report that device-level I-V performance analysis is now a built-in module within the SEMulator3D so... » read more

Advanced 3D Design Technology Co-Optimization For Manufacturability


By Yu De Chen, Jacky Huang, Dalong Zhao, Jiangjiang (Jimmy) Gu, and Joseph Ervin Yield and cost have always been critical factors for both manufacturers and designers of semiconductor products. It is a continuous challenge to meet targets of both yield and cost, due to new device structures and the increasing complexity of process innovations introduced to achieve improved product performanc... » read more

Improving Patterning Yield At The 5nm Semiconductor Node


Engineering decisions are always data-driven. As scientists, we only believe in facts and not in intuition or feelings. At the manufacturing stage, the semiconductor industry is eager to provide data and facts to engineers based upon metrics such as the quantity of wafers produced per hour and sites/devices tested on each of those wafers. The massive quantity of data generated in semiconduct... » read more

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