LEO: Line End Optimizer for Sub-7nm Technology Nodes
Sub-7nm technology nodes have introduced new challenges, specifically in the lower metal layers. Extreme Ultraviolet Lithography (EUV) and multi-patterning-based lithography such as Self-Aligned Double Patterning (SADP) solutions have become key choices for the manufacturing of these layers. The demand for microprocessors has increased tremendously in the last few years and this imposes another challenge to the chip manufacturers to build their products at a very rapid rate. These days a mix of different lithography solutions for the manufacturing of metal layers is quite common. We propose a first-of-its-kind routing plugin which solves design rule violations for multiple lithography technologies without making any changes in the existing routers. Our plugin consists of a practical line-end optimization (LEO) algorithm, which solves most line-end problems in a few minutes, even for very large designs. Our solution is implemented in the development of a 7nm, industrial microprocessor design.