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Imec reports customized lenslet array for KLA-Tencor’s advanced e-beam tool

Imec announces that it has designed and fabricated an electrostatic micro-lens (lenslet) array for KLA-Tencor’s anticipated Reflective Electron Beam Lithography (REBL) tool. The REBL technology potentially enables a high throughput e-beam writing process for maskless lithography. The lenslet array is a key component for the parallelization of the e-beam writing process. Functionality of the lenslet chip was demonstrated in KLA-Tencor’s REBL e-beam column.

The lenslet consists of a densely packed array of 4µm deep cylindrical holes with a 1.4 µm diameter and top spacing of only 200nm. The electron beam entering the lenslet holes is focused through a set of four ring electrodes. The ring electrodes can be tuned to focus the electron beams by applying static voltages up to 50V on the ring electrodes. The bottom of each hole consists of a small metal plate that can be switched by a CMOS circuitry below, either reflecting or absorbing the incoming electrons. In this way, the incoming electron beam is split into one million smaller beamlets, a strategy designed to enable higher throughput for the e-beam writing process through parallelization.

Via its CMORE service, imec offers companies all the services need to develop packaged customized specialty microsystem products. Imec’s services range from feasibility studies, design and technology development, testing and reliability studies, to prototyping and low-volume manufacturing. And through its alliances, imec can also offer a path to transfer the technology to a foundry for volume production. The CMORE toolbox contains a wide variety of device technologies on 200mm such as CMOS, Si-photonics, MEMS, specialty image sensors and packaging.

“Many companies can benefit from specialty semiconductor devices to enhance and increase the functionality of their equipment,” states Rudi Cartuyvels, Vice President Smart Systems and Energy Technology at imec. “We are pleased that our semiconductor and heterogeneous integration expertise, and our design and production service, supported the development of KLA-Tencor’s REBL tool.”

About imec
Imec performs world-leading research in nanoelectronics. Imec leverages its scientific knowledge with the innovative power of its global partnerships in ICT, healthcare and energy. Imec delivers industry-relevant technology solutions. In a unique high-tech environment, its international top talent is committed to providing the building blocks for a better life in a sustainable society. Imec is headquartered in Leuven, Belgium, and has offices in Belgium, the Netherlands, Taiwan, US, China, India and Japan. Its staff of close to 2,000 people includes more than 600 industrial residents and guest researchers. In 2011, imec’s revenue (P&L) was about 300 million euro. Further information on imec can be found at www.imec.be.

Imec is a registered trademark for the activities of IMEC International (a legal entity set up under Belgian law as a "stichting van openbaar nut”), imec Belgium (IMEC vzw supported by the Flemish Government), imec the Netherlands (Stichting IMEC Nederland, part of Holst Centre which is supported by the Dutch Government), imec Taiwan (IMEC Taiwan Co.) and imec China (IMEC Microelectronics (Shangai) Co. Ltd.) and imec India (Imec India Private Limited).

Forward Looking Statements
Statements in this press release other than historical facts, such as statements regarding the potential capabilities and performance of KLA-Tencor’s REBL technology, the functionality of imec’s lenslet array and the performance enhancements that it offers, and the potential benefits that may generally be realized by users of imec’s or KLA-Tencor’s offerings, are forward-looking statements. 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.

This research was, in part, funded by the U.S. Government. The views and conclusions contained in this document are those of the authors and should not be viewed as representing the official policies, either express or implied, of the U.S. Government.

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