TMC’s STACIS®: Enabling Nanometer-Scale Lithography Research at SEMATECH

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

PEABODY, Massachusetts,SEMATECH called on Technical Manufacturing Corporation (TMC) when it hit a roadblock in its immersion lithography research at 45 nm node. Unable to achieve high resolution patterns with an Amphibian Systems immersion stepper supported by a conventional vibration isolation system, SEMATECH selected TMC’s STACIS® Active Piezoelectric Vibration Control System to solve the problem.

The STACIS® 2100 is compatible with all internal tool vibration isolation systems and provides the highest level of vibration isolation commercially available,” said Steve Ryan, TMC vice president of marketing. “Supporting the tool on Stacis resulted in a dramatic reduction of overall building floor vibration levels and achievement of the manufacturer’s floor vibration specification. More importantly, Stacis greatly improved image pattern quality.”

In order to achieve high resolution and quality test patterns, SEMATECH initially installed the Amphibian stepper on a steel and concrete platform with a steel support structure that incorporated commercial elastomer vibration isolation pads. This pedestal did not achieve the tool’s specified vibration criteria and pattern quality was poor.

A second attempt to reduce vibration was made by effectively shorting out the elastomer pads with metal shims, leading to a more rigid, non-resonant structure. There was little improvement. The vibration criteria were not met with either version of the pedestal and pattern quality remained poor. Ultimately, the platform supports were removed and replaced with Stacis, placed directly beneath the existing platform.

QuietIsland® is a trademark of Technical Manufacturing Corporation.

Steve Ryan
Technical Manufacturing Corp.