Jpn. J. Appl. Phys. 42 (2003) pp. 3755-3762  |Next Article|  |Table of Contents|
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Line-Edge Roughness: Characterization and Material Origin

Toru Yamaguchi, Kenji Yamazaki, Masao Nagase and Hideo Namatsu

NTT Basic Research Laboratories, NTT Corporation, 3-1 Morinosato Wakamiya, Atsugi, Kanagawa 243-0198, Japan

(Received November 15, 2002; accepted for publication December 20, 2002)

Line-edge roughness (LER) is a serious problem that we encounter in nanolithography as pattern sizes shrink. Two critical issues concerning the LER of resist patterns are its characterization and its origin. In this study, characterization involved estimating the LER of 300-nm line-&-space patterns in ZEP520 resist of various thicknesses by three standard metrological methods: top-down scanning electron microscope (SEM) method, top-down atomic force microscope (AFM) method, and sidewall AFM method. In this paper, we review these methods and compare their results. Regarding the origin, sidewall AFM measurements revealed polymer aggregates naturally contained in resist films to be the origin of LER in chain-scission-type resists. How the aggregates contribute to LER during the development process was also clarified.

URL: http://jjap.jsap.jp/link?JJAP/42/3755/
DOI: 10.1143/JJAP.42.3755
KEYWORDS:line-edge roughness, polymer aggregates, positive-tone resists, development, electron-beam lithography


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