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Metrology Of Thin Resist For High NA EUVL


One of the many constrains of high numerical aperture extreme ultraviolet lithography (High NA EUVL) is related to resist thickness. In fact, one of the consequences of moving from current 0.33NA to 0.55NA (high NA) is the depth of focus (DOF) reduction. In addition, as the resist feature lines shrink down to 8nm half pitch, it is essential to limit the aspect ratio to avoid pattern collapse. T... » read more

Legacy Tools, New Tricks: Optical 3D Inspection


Stacking chips is making it far more difficult to find existing and latent defects, and to check for things like for things like die shift, leftover particles from other processes, co-planarity of bumps, and adhesion of different materials such as dielectrics. There are several main problems: Not everything is visible from a single angle, particularly when vertical structures are used; ... » read more

Chip Industry Earnings: A Mixed Bag


Editor's Note: Updated the week of Oct. 31 and Nov. 7 for additional earnings releases. Although most companies reported revenue growth, this latest round of chip industry earnings releases reflected a few major themes: Lower future quarter guidance to varying degrees, due to the recent U.S. export restrictions related to China; Negative impact of the inflationary environment on corn... » read more

Week In Review: Manufacturing, Test


GlobalFoundries launched GF Labs, an “open framework of internal and external research and development initiatives that deliver a differentiated pipeline of market-driven process technology solutions for future data-centric, connected, intelligent and secure applications.” Greg Bartlett, GF's senior vice president of technology, engineering at quality, said the goal is to develop and exp... » read more

Week In Review: Manufacturing, Test


Chipmakers China’s Tsinghua Unigroup is in trouble. The group is the parent company of China’s YMTC, a 3D NAND supplier, and other chip ventures. It is close to moving into bankruptcy proceedings. Now, a consortium led by Alibaba has emerged as the frontrunner to take over Tsinghua Unigroup, according to a report from Bloomberg. That deal would keep the company afloat, the report said. ... » read more

Week In Review: Manufacturing, Test


Chipmakers and OEMs As reported, Intel this week reorganized its operations following delays with its 7nm technology. Intel is behind TSMC and Samsung in technology. As a result, TSMC’s foundry customers, such as AMD, Nvidia and others, are also pulling ahead of Intel. In addition, reports have surfaced that Intel will outsource some of its leading-edge chip production to TSMC. To solve t... » read more

Speeding Up The R&D Metrology Process


Several chipmakers are making some major changes in the characterization/metrology lab, adding more fab-like processes in this group to help speed up chip development times. The characterization/metrology lab, which is generally under the radar, is a group that works with the R&D organization and the fab. The characterization lab is involved in the early analytical work for next-generati... » read more

Metrology Challenges For Gate-All-Around


Metrology is proving to be a major challenge for those foundries working on processes for gate-all-around FETs at 3nm and beyond. Metrology is the art of measuring and characterizing structures in devices. Measuring and characterizing structures in devices has become more difficult and expensive at each new node, and the introduction of new types of transistors is making this even harder. Ev... » read more

Week In Review: Manufacturing, Test


Semi takeover targets Semiconductor M&A activity is heating up again. So who is next? “Within our coverage universe, we believe AMBA (Ambarella) and SLAB (Silicon Labs) represent the most likely targets moving forward,” according to KeyBanc in a research note. KeyBanc also listed some other “M&A Combinations That Could Make Sense.” Some of these combos make sense, while othe... » read more

Finding Defects In Chips With Machine Learning


Chipmakers are using more and different traditional tool types than ever to find killer defects in advanced chips, but they are also turning to complementary solutions like advanced forms of machine learning to help solve the problem. A subset of artificial intelligence (AI), machine learning has been used in computing and other fields for decades. In fact, early forms of machine learning ha... » read more

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