KLA-Tencor Introduces Five Patterning Control Systems for Sub-7nm IC Manufacturing

September 11, 2017 at 4:15 PM EDT
Process Control at the Source Accelerates Integration of Multi-Patterning Technologies and EUV Lithography

MILPITAS, Calif., Sept. 11, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- KLA-Tencor Corporation (NASDAQ: KLAC) today introduced five patterning control systems that help chipmakers achieve the strict process tolerances required for multi-patterning technologies and EUV lithography at the sub-7nm logic and leading-edge memory design nodes. Within the IC fab, the ATL™ (Accurate Tunable Laser) overlay metrology system and the SpectraFilm™ F1 film metrology system characterize processes and monitor excursions during fabrication of finFET, DRAM, 3D NAND and other complex devices. The Teron™ 640e reticle inspection product line and the LMS IPRO7 reticle registration metrology system facilitate development and qualification of EUV and advanced optical reticles at mask shops. The 5D Analyzer® X1 advanced data analysis system is the foundation of an open architecture approach that supports fab-customized analyses and real-time process control applications. These five new systems extend KLA-Tencor's diverse portfolio of metrology, inspection and data analysis systems that enable identification and correction of process variations at the source.

KLA-Tencor’s five new patterning control systems for reticle and IC manufacturing enable identification and correction of process variations at the source.

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"At the 7nm and 5nm design nodes, it is becoming increasingly difficult for chipmakers to find specific sources of on-product overlay error, critical dimension non-uniformity and hotspots," said Ahmad Khan executive vice president of the Global Products Group at KLA-Tencor. "Our customers are looking beyond scanner corrections to understand how variations from all reticle and wafer process steps affect patterning. Through open access to fab-wide metrology and inspection data, IC engineers can quickly pinpoint and manage process issues directly where they occur. Our systems, such as the five introduced today, deliver our strongest technology to our customers' experts, enabling them to drive down the patterning error contributions of every wafer, reticle and process step."

The five new systems that support patterning control for sub-7nm design node devices include:

  • The ATL overlay metrology system utilizes unique tunable laser technology with 1nm resolution to automatically maintain highly accurate and robust overlay error measurements in the presence of process variations, supporting fast technology ramps and accurate wafer disposition during production.
  • The SpectraFilm F1 film metrology system employs new optical technologies that determine single- and multi-layer film thicknesses and uniformity with high precision to monitor deposition processes in production, and deliver bandgap data that predict device electrical performance earlier than end-of-line test.
  • The Teron 640e reticle inspection product line incorporates optical, detector and algorithm enhancements that detect critical pattern and particle defects at high throughput, advancing the development and qualification of EUV and optical patterned reticles in leading-edge mask shops.
  • The LMS IPRO7 reticle registration metrology system leverages a new operating mode to accurately measure on-device reticle pattern placement error with fast cycle time, enabling comprehensive reticle qualification for e-beam mask writer corrections and reduction of reticle-related contributions to device overlay errors in the IC fab.
  • The 5D Analyzer X1 data analysis system offers an extendible, open architecture that accepts data from a wide range of metrology and process tools to enable advanced analysis, characterization and real-time control of fab-wide process variations.

ATL, SpectraFilm F1, Teron 640e, LMS IPRO7 and 5D Analyzer X1 are part of KLA-Tencor's unique 5D Patterning Control Solution™, which also includes systems for patterned wafer geometry measurements, in-situ process measurements, critical dimension and device profile metrology, lithography and patterning simulation, and discovery of critical hotspots. Several ATL, SpectraFilm F1 and 5D Analyzer X1 systems are in use at leading-edge IC manufacturers worldwide, supporting a range of patterning control applications. Through upgrades and new tool shipments, the Teron 640e and LMS IPRO7 expand KLA-Tencor's strong installed base of reticle inspection and metrology systems in advanced mask shops. To maintain the high performance and productivity demanded by IC manufacturing, ATL, SpectraFilm F1, Teron 640e, LMS IPRO7 and 5D Analyzer X1 are backed by KLA-Tencor's global comprehensive service network. More information on the five new systems can be found on the advanced patterning control web page.

About KLA-Tencor:
KLA-Tencor Corporation, a leading provider of process control and yield management solutions, partners with customers around the world to develop state-of-the-art inspection and metrology technologies. These technologies serve the semiconductor and other related nanoelectronics industries. With a portfolio of industry-standard products and a team of world-class engineers and scientists, the company has created superior solutions for its customers for more than 40 years. Headquartered in Milpitas, Calif., KLA-Tencor has dedicated customer operations and service centers around the world. Additional information may be found at www.kla-tencor.com (KLAC-P).

Forward Looking Statements:
Statements in this press release other than historical facts, such as statements regarding the expected performance of the ATL, SpectraFilm F1, Teron 640e, LMS IPRO7 and 5D Analyzer X1 systems; the extendibility of the ATL, SpectraFilm F1, Teron 640e, LMS IPRO7 and 5D Analyzer X1 systems to future technology nodes; expected uses of the ATL, SpectraFilm F1, Teron 640e, LMS IPRO7 and 5D Analyzer X1 systems by KLA-Tencor's customers; and the anticipated cost, operational and other benefits realizable by users of the ATL, SpectraFilm F1, Teron 640e, LMS IPRO7 and 5D Analyzer X1 systems, are forward-looking statements, and are subject to the Safe Harbor provisions created by the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. These forward-looking statements are based on current information and expectations, and involve a number of risks and uncertainties. Actual results may differ materially from those projected in such statements due to various factors, including delays in the adoption of new technologies (whether due to cost or performance issues or otherwise), the introduction of competing products by other companies or unanticipated technological challenges or limitations that affect the implementation, performance or use of KLA-Tencor's products.

 

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SOURCE KLA-Tencor Corporation

Investor Relations: Ed Lockwood, Sr. Director, Investor Relations, (408) 875-9529, ed.lockwood@kla-tencor.com or Media Relations: Becky Howland, Ph.D., Sr. Director, Corporate Communications, (408) 875-9350, becky.howland@kla-tencor.com