A Wrap-Up Of Photomask Japan 2024


This year, I had the opportunity to attend the 30th Symposium on Photomask and NGL Mask Technology, also called Photomask Japan 2024 (PMJ), in Yokohama, Japan, from April 16 to 18. This well-regarded symposium brings together engineers from all over the world to share ideas on photomasks, NGL masks and related technologies. It was great being back to an in-person conference after four years ... » read more

eBeam Initiative Marks Major Milestones Over 15 Years Of Photomasks And Lithography


The eBeam initiative celebrated its 15th anniversary at the recent SPIE Advanced Lithography + Patterning Conference. 130 members of the mask and lithography community attended the annual lunch to mark the milestone. The eBeam Initiative welcomed its 53rd member, FUJIFILM Corporation, having grown from 20 members and advisors at its launch. FUJIFILM is the first company from the chemical supply... » read more

Make The Impossible Possible: Use Variable-Shaped Beam Mask Writers And Curvilinear Full-Chip Inverse Lithography Technology For 193i Contacts/Vias With Mask-Wafer Co-Optimization


Abstract: "Full-chip curvilinear inverse lithography technology (ILT) requires mask writers to write full reticle curvilinear mask patterns in a reasonable write time. We jointly study and present the benefits of a full-chip, curvilinear, stitchless ILT with mask-wafer co-optimization (MWCO) for variable-shaped beam (VSB) mask writers and validate its benefits on mask and wafer at Micron Tec... » read more

Industry Luminaries Highlight Opportunities For Advancing The Non-EUV Leading Edge


The eBeam Initiative’s 12th annual Luminaries survey in 2023 reported a range of nodes from >5nm to 14nm as the most advanced non-EUV nodes using 193i lithography. A panel of semiconductor photomask and lithography experts debated several of the survey results, including this one, to provide more insights behind the results. Aki Fujimura, CEO of D2S, Inc., the managing company sponsor of t... » read more

Center For Deep Learning In Electronics Manufacturing: Bringing Deep Learning To Production For Photomask Manufacturing


The Center for Deep Learning in Electronics Manufacturing (CDLe) was formed as an alliance between D2S, Mycronic and NuFlare Technology in autumn 2018. Assignees from each alliance partner worked with deep learning (DL) experts under the leadership of Ajay Baranwal, director of CDLe. The CDLe’s mission was to 1) turn DL into a core competency inside each of the companies and 2) do DL projects... » read more

Why Curvy Design Now? Less Change Than You Think And Manufacturable Today


A curvilinear (curvy) chip, if magically made possible, would be smaller, faster, and use less power. Magic is no longer needed on the manufacturing side, as companies like Micron Technology are making photomasks with curvy shapes using state-of-the-art multi-beam mask writers today. Yet the entire chip-design infrastructure is based on the Manhattan assumption of 90-degree turns, even though i... » read more

Survey: 2023 eBeam Initiative Luminaries Survey Results


Luminaries are confident in high-NA EUV and curvilinear masks 12th Annual Luminaries Survey — July 2023 • Luminaries remain confident in broad High-NA EUV adoption by 2028 • Confidence doubled in leading-edge mask shops handling curvilinear mask demand • Curvilinear masks aren’t just for EUV • Luminaries are more confident about 2023 mask revenues than SEMI Click here to rea... » read more

When And Where To Implement AI/ML In Fabs


Deciphering complex interactions between variables is where machine learning and deep learning shine, but figuring out exactly how ML-based systems will be most useful is the job of engineers. The challenge is in pairing their domain expertise with available ML tools to maximize the value of both. This depends on sufficient quantities of good data, highly optimized algorithms, and proper tra... » read more

Why Curvy Design Now? Manufacturing Is Possible And Scaling Needs It


Have you ever seen roots or tree branches take a 90-degree turn? Have you ever seen a river that takes a 90-degree turn? Nature doesn’t do 90-degree turns, or for that matter any sharp angle turns – not even 135 degrees. Yet the entire chip-design infrastructure is based on the Manhattan assumption of 90-degree turns. While it would take time to change, is there any doubt that a curvilinea... » read more

Multi-Beam Writers Are Driving EUV Mask Development


By Jan Hendrik Peters (bmbg consult) and Ines Stolberg (Vistec Electron Beam) The European Mask and Lithography Conference (EMLC) 2023, held in Dresden this past June, was attended by about 180 people and over 60 talks and posters were presented. With several keynote and invited talks over two and a half days, the conference gave an overview of the semiconductor and technology landscape in E... » read more

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