EUV, lithography, laser plasma, light source, tin, mass limited target


Extreme ultraviolet lithography(EUVL) is being developed worldwide as the next generation technology to be inserted in ~ 2009 for the mass production of IC chips with feature sizes <35 nm. One major challenge to its implementation is the development of a 13.5 nm EUV source of radiation that meets the requirements of current roadmap designs of the source of illumination in commercial EUVL scanners. The light source must be debris-free, in a free-space environment with the imaging EUV optics that must provide sufficient, narrow spectral band EUV power to print 100 wafers/hr. To meet this need, extensive studies on emission from a laser plasma source utilizing tin-doped droplet target was conducted. Presented in this work, are the many optical techniques such as spectroscopy, radiometry, and imaging, that were employed to characterize and optimize emission from the laser plasma source State of the art EUV spectrographs were employed to observe the source's spectrum under various laser irradiation conditions. Comparing the experimental spectra to those from theory, has allowed the determination of the Sn ion stages responsible for emitting into the useful EUV bandwidth. Experimental results were compared to spectral simulations obtained using Collisional-Radiative Equilibrium (CRE) model, as well. Moreover, extensive measurements surveying source emission from 2 nm to 30 nm, which is the region of the electromagnetic spectrum defined as EUV, was accomplished. Absolutely calibrated metrology was employed with the Flying Circus instrument from which the source's conversion efficiency (CE)--from laser to the useful EUV energy--was characterized under various laser irradiation conditions. Hydrodynamic simulations of the plasma expansion together with the CRE model predicted the condition at which optimum conversion could be attained. The condition was demonstrated experimentally, with the highest CE to be slightly above 2%, which is the highest value among all EUV source contenders. In addition to laser intensity, the CE was found to depend on the laser wavelength. For better understanding, this observation is compared to results from simulations. Through a novel approach in imaging, the size of the plasma was characterized by recording images of the plasma within a narrow band, around 13.5 nm. The size, approximately 100 ìm, is safely within the etendue limit set by the optical elements in the EUV scanner. Finally, the notion of irradiating the target with multiple laser beams was explored for the possibility of improving the source's conversion efficiency.


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Richardson, Martin


Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.)


College of Optics and Photonics

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Doctoral Dissertation (Open Access)