EUV Mask Blank Battle Brewing

Amid the ramp of extreme ultraviolet (EUV) lithography in the market, suppliers of EUV mask blanks are expanding their production. And a new player—Applied Materials—is looking to enter the market. AGC and Hoya, the two main suppliers of EUV mask blanks, are adding capacity for these critical components that are used for EUV photomasks. A mask blank serves as the substrate for a photomas... » read more

There’s More To EUV Than Source Power

By Katherine Derbyshire For some time now, most industry coverage of EUV lithography has focused on the light source. As my colleagues have pointed out, source power limitations impose major constraints on not only potential EUV-based device manufacturing, but even on development of sub-20nm devices and process technologies. When throughput is in the neighborhood of four wafers per hour, lear... » read more

For want of an o-ring, the mask was lost

O-ring seals are everywhere in a typical semiconductor fab. Any piece of vacuum equipment uses several of them to seal the openings where components of the process chamber fit together. Yet, as ubiquitous as they are, most process engineers don’t think about them very much. They buy the seal specified by the equipment vendor, from the supplier with the most attractive price, and pretty much l... » read more