Searching For EUV Mask Defects


Chipmakers hope to insert extreme ultraviolet (EUV) lithography at 7nm and/or 5nm, but several challenges need to be solved before this technology can be used in production. One lingering issue that is becoming more worrisome is how to find [gettech id="31045" comment="EUV"] mask defects. That isn't the only issue, of course. The industry continues to work on the power source and resists. Bu... » read more

Why Fabs Worry About Tool Parts


Achieving high yields with acceptable costs is becoming much more difficult as chipmakers migrate to next-generation 3D NAND and finFET devices—but not just because of rising complexity or lithography issues. To fabricate an advanced logic chip, for example, a wafer moves from one piece of equipment to another in what amounts to 1,000 process steps or more in a fab. Any glitch with the equ... » read more

Manufacturing Bits: July 25


Metrology for the intelligence community The semiconductor industry continues to move full speed ahead with traditional chip scaling. There are several challenges in the arena. One of the big but lessor known challenges is metrology. Metrology, the science of characterizing and measuring films and structures, is becoming more complex, challenging and expensive at each node. Looking to solv... » read more

Manufacturing Bits: June 27


World’s brightest laser The University of Nebraska-Lincoln has set the unofficial record for the world’s brightest laser. Researchers have focused a laser at a brightness of 1 billion times greater than the surface of the sun. This feat was accomplished using the so-called Diocles Laser at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. The laser has a combination of peak power and a repetition ra... » read more

High-Stakes Litho Game


The commercial introduction of EUV looks all but assured these days. There is enough history to show it works. Uptime and throughput are improving, and systems are shipping today. The question now is how to measure its success. In the short-term, this is a fairly simple financial exercise for companies like ASML and Zeiss, which have been closely collaborating to get these massive systems ou... » read more

Extending EUV Beyond 3nm


Jan van Schoot, senior principal architect at [getentity id="22935" comment="ASML"], sat down with Semiconductor Engineering to talk about how far EUV can be extended and where it is today. What follows are excerpts of that discussion. SE: High numerical aperture [gettech id="31045" comment="EUV"] has been in the works for some time as a way of extending EUV. How is this technology shaping... » read more

ASML To Buy Hermes


Looking to expand into new markets, ASML Holding has entered into an agreement to acquire e-beam wafer inspection specialist Hermes Microvision (HMI) in a cash transaction valued at 2.75 billion euros (US$3.08 billion). With the proposed acquisition of Taiwan’s HMI, ASML will enter two new markets—-wafer inspection as well as mask inspection for extreme ultraviolet (EUV) lithography. In ... » read more

Inside Inspection And Metrology


Semiconductor Engineering sat down to talk about inspection, metrology and other issues with Mehdi Vaez-Iravani, vice president of advanced imaging technologies at Applied Materials. What follows are excerpts of that conversation. SE: Today, the industry is working on a new range of complex architectures, such as 3D NAND and finFETs. For these technologies, the industry is clearly struggling... » read more

The Week In Review: Manufacturing


IC Insights released its preliminary top IC rankings in terms of sales for 2015. In the rankings, Intel remains in first place in terms of chip sales in 2015, followed by Samsung and TSMC. GlobalFoundries and UMC also moved up in the rankings. Beyond that, the market is in flux. “The pending mergers of Avago and Broadcom and NXP and Freescale will have a significant impact on future top-20 ra... » read more

The Week In Review: Manufacturing


Looking to propel the next wave of OLED displays, Applied Materials has rolled out two new systems. The tools enable the volume production of OLED displays for both mobile products and TVs. In addition, Applied Materials has shipped an Applied TopMet roll-to-roll metal deposition system to Jindal Poly Films, a leader in PET and BOPP films for flexible packaging and labeling applications. In... » read more

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