Modeling, Control, and Optimization: Critical technologies in Semiconductor Manufacturing
We begin by reviewing the design and manufacturing flow for modern integrated circuits. We then describe the vital role played by modeling, control, and optimization technologies in this design/manufacturing flow.
Next, we present our efforts in developing metrology for lithography and plasma etching applications. These include temperature, etch-rate, and thermal flux sensors. Our sensors are fully self-contained with on board power, communications, and signal processing electronics. They externally resemble standard silicon wafers compatible with standard cassette-to-cassette robotics, and thus require no equipment modification for deployment. The sensors we have developed offer very fine spatial and time resolution, making them suitable for process optimization and control. We describe our efforts in using these sensors for feedback control of the photolithography process. We then discuss our efforts at commercializing this technology.
We close with an overview of our most recent work on modeling, optimization, and control for a variety of problems including inverse lithography, proximity correction, double patterning, and design rule checking.