Microlithography 2005
Conference paper

193nm single layer photoresists: Defeating tradeoffs with a new class of fluoropolymers

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The focus of this paper is to utilize the acidity of hexafluoroalcohol (HFA) in addressing performance deficiencies associated with current 193nm methacrylate resist materials. In this study, we have designed and developed a variety of HFA pendant methacrylate monomers and the corresponding imaging polymers for ArF lithography. It was shown that typical swelling behavior observed in methacrylate resists can be substantially reduced or eliminated by replacing commonly used multicylcic lactone polar functionalities with acidic HFA side chains. The incorporation of aliphatic spacers between HFA and polymer backbone were found to be more effective than cyclic hindered moieties, in achieving linear dissolution characteristics. The typical poor etch stability associated with fluorine atoms in HFA can be substantially minimized by designing side chains with a combination of appropriate cyclic and aliphatic moieties and fine-tuning the corresponding polymer compositions. PEB sensitivity of high activation energy protecting group (e.g., methyladamentyl group) based methacrylate resists can be substantially improved through the incorporation of acidic HFA side chains (6nm/C to <1 nm/C). The key application space for HFA-methacrylate resists appears to be trench level lithography. It was also demonstrated that these HFA materials are compatible with immersion lithography and result in dramatically improved process windows for iso trench features, in addition to other lines/space features.