Abstract

As a promising resolution enhancement technique, a set of pixelated source and mask optimization (SMO) methods has been introduced to further improve the lithography at 45 nm node and beyond. Recently, some papers studied the impact of the scanner errors on SMO, and the results revealed that the source blur and flare seriously impact on the lithography performance of the optimal source and mask resulting from SMO. However, current SMO methods did not propose an effective method to compensate for the impact of these nonideal factors of the actual scanners. To overcome this drawback, this paper focuses on developing a robust hybrid SMO (HSMO) method where the sensitivities of the aerial image to source blur and flare are introduced into the cost function. Simulation results are compared with traditional SMO to demonstrate the benefit of the proposed source blur-flare-aware HSMO method in pattern fidelity and process window.

© 2015 Optical Society of America

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