Use of step and flash imprint lithography for direct imprinting of dielectric materials for dual damascene processing

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Willson, C. Grant
Nishimura, Yukio
Johnson, Stephen C.
Palmieri, Jr., Frank Anthony
Stewart, Michael D.

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United States Patent and Trademark Office


In some embodiments, the present invention is directed to methods that involve the combination of step-and-flash imprint lithography (SFIL) with a multi-tier template to simultaneously pattern multiple levels of, for example, an integrated circuit device. In such embodiments, the imprinted material generally does not serve or act as a simple etch mask or photoresist, but rather serves as the insulation between levels and lines, i.e., as a functional dielectric material. After imprinting and a multiple step curing process, the imprinted pattern is filled with metal, as in dual damascene processing. Typically, the two printed levels will comprise a “via level,” which is used to make electrical contact with the previously patterned under-level, and a “wiring level.” The present invention provides for the direct patterning of functional materials, which represents a significant departure from the traditional approach to microelectronics manufacturing.



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