Closed Industrial Partnership Programme
|Title||Controlling photon and plasma induced processes at EUV optical surfaces (CP3E)|
|Executive organisational unit||DIFFER|
|Programme management||Prof.dr. F. Bijkerk|
|Cost estimate||M€ 5.5|
|Partner(s)||Carl Zeiss, ASML|
CP3E aims to understand and control the collective plasma, photochemical and thin film processes, as they occur in an advanced optical application of thin film physics: the use of multilayer reflective optics in Extreme UV photolithography. It addresses the basic research of nanoscale-multilayer growth, - composition and - surface conditioning on the one hand, and dynamically-balanced photo- and plasma-chemical processes at the multilayer surface on the other.
Background, relevance and implementation
Multilayer reflective optics essentially enable high-resolution photolithography at EUV wavelengths. However, the EUV photon fluxes required for IC-production are of such high intensity that photo-chemically induced contamination, mirror heating, and aggressive, radiation-driven plasmas occur. The complex interplay of these phenomena imposes extremely harsh conditions on the delicate, nano-scaled multilayer optics, and jeopardizes the short-wavelength imaging process. The simultaneous occurrence of these surface and layer affecting conditions poses a major research challenge to basic science. CP3E aims to address this challenge, so that the basic know-how can be developed and the required lifetime of the optics can be achieved. CP3E included a remote FOM research activity at the location of industrial partner ASML. The joint instrumentation included - thin film growth, surface analysis, and high-flux plasma-surface interaction set-ups at DIFFER, - high-flux EUV-exposure facilities at ASML, and - state-of-the-art optics fabrication and characterization set-ups at Zeiss.
The final evaluation in 2015 was based on a self-evaluation initiated by the programme leader.
Please find a research highlight that was achieved in 2013 within this FOM programme here.