Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

Optical Metrology for Directed Self-assembly Patterning Using Mueller Matrix Spectroscopic Ellipsometry Based Scatterometry
by Dixit, Dhairya J., Ph.D., State University of New York at Albany, 2015, 160; 3718824
Abstract (Summary)

The semiconductor industry continues to drive patterning solutions that enable devices with higher memory storage capacity, faster computing performance, lower cost per transistors, and higher transistor density. These developments in the field of semiconductor manufacturing along with the overall minimization of the size of transistors require cutting-edge metrology tools for characterization.

Directed self-assembly (DSA) patterning process can be used to fabricate nanoscale line-space patterns and contact holes via thermodynamically driven micro-phase separation of block copolymer (BCP) films with boundary constraints from guiding templates. Its main advantages are high pattern resolution (~10 nm), high throughput, no requirement of a high-resolution mask, and compatibility with standard fab-equipment and processes. Although research into DSA patterning has demonstrated a high potential as a nanoscale patterning process, there are critical challenges that must be overcome before transferring DSA into high volume manufacturing, including achievement of low defect density and high process stability. For this, advances in critical dimension (CD) and overlay measurement as well as rapid defect characterization are required. Both scatterometry and critical dimension-scanning electron microscopy (CD-SEM) are routinely used for inline dimensional metrology. CD-SEM inspection is limited, as it does not easily provide detailed line-shape information, whereas scatterometry has the capability of measuring important feature dimensions including: line-width, line-shape, sidewall-angle, and thickness of the patterned samples quickly and non-destructively.

The present work describes the application of Mueller matrix spectroscopic ellipsometry (MMSE) based scatterometry to optically characterize DSA patterned line- space grating and contact hole structures fabricated with phase-separated polystyrene-b-polymethylmethacrylate (PS-b-PMMA) at various integration steps of BCP DSA based patterning process. This work focuses on understanding the efficacy of MMSE base scatterometry for characterizing complex DSA structures. For example, the use of symmetry-antisymmetry properties associated with Mueller matrix (MM) elements to understand the topography of the periodic nanostructures and measure defectivity. Simulations (the forward problem approach of scatterometry) are used to investigate MM elements’ sensitivity to changes in DSA structure such as one vs. two contact hole patterns and predict sensitivity to dimensional changes. A regression-based approach is used to extract feature shape parameters of the DSA structures by fitting simulated optical spectra to experimental optical spectra. Detection of the DSA defects is a key to reducing defect density for eventual manufacturability and production use of DSA process. Simulations of optical models of structures containing defects are used to evaluate the sensitivity of MM elements to DSA defects. This study describes the application of MMSE to determine the DSA pattern defectivity via spectral comparisons based on optical anisotropy and depolarization. The use of depolarization and optical anisotropy for characterization of experimental MMSE data is a very recent development in scatterometry. In addition, reconstructed scatterometry models are used to calculate line edge roughness in 28 nm pitch Si fins fabricated using DSA patterning process.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Diebold, Alain C.
Commitee: Bakhru, Hassaram, Farrell, Richard, Levine, Ernest, Ventrice, Carl
School: State University of New York at Albany
Department: Nanoscale Science and Engineering-Nanoscale Science
School Location: United States -- New York
Source: DAI-B 76/12(E), Dissertation Abstracts International
Subjects: Optics, Materials science
Keywords: Directed self-assembly, Ellipsometry, Metrology, Mueller matrix, Optical critical dimension, Scatterometry
Publication Number: 3718824
ISBN: 9781321988482
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