Catalysis and materials development for photolithography

Mesch, Ryan Alan
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In recent years the microelectronics industry as found itself at an impasse. The tradition pathway towards smaller transistors at lower costs has hit a roadblock with the failure of 157 nm lithography and the continued delays in 13.5 nm extreme ultra violet light sources. While photolithography has been able to keep pace with Moore’s law over the past four decades, alternative patterning technologies are now required to keep up with market demand.

The first section of this dissertation discusses the new resolution enhancement technique develop in the Willson lab termed pitchdivision. Through the incorporation of specifically tailored photobase generators (PBGs) into commercially available resists, the resolution of current 193 tools may be doubled. Special two-stage PBGs were designed and synthesized to increase the image fidelity of pitchdivision patterns.

The next project deals with the design, synthesis, and evaluation of resists that find amplification through unzipping polymers. An aromatizing polyester polymer that acts as dissolution inhibitor in novolac and is inherently sensitive to 13.5 nm exposure is discussed. Initial results show excellent sensitivity and promise towards a new class of EUV resists.