Grenoble and Colombes, France--CEA-Leti and Arkema, in association with LCPO (Laboratoire de Chimie des Polymères Organiques) of Bordeaux, France, have demonstrated the resolution potential of lithography based on nanostructured polymers. The initial results meet the requirements of the next 4 generations of electronic chips due to the ability to obtain a 20 nm pitch and reduce the diameter of contacts down to 7 nm, demonstrating the compatibility of this technology for technological nodes ranging from 20 nm to sub-10 nm.
CEA-Leti and Arkema have created IDEAL (Insertion of DSA [directed self-assembly] lithography for CMOS [complementary metal-oxide semiconductor] application), a collaborative research platform dedicated to the development and industrialization of nanolithography based on nanostructured polymers. This platform relies on CEA-Leti’s expertise in process and electronic component integration and on Arkema’s know-how in the development and industrialization of nanostructured polymers. These complementary capabilities will help adapt materials and processes to achieve optimum results and make the technology available to the semiconductor industry without delay.
The semiconductor industry has had to contend with the limits of conventional optical lithography for several years now. The partners say that the cost and the problems encountered with extreme ultraviolet (EUV) technology undermine the feasibility of the technological roadmap of micro-electronics. Lithography by self-assembly (or nanostructuring) of polymers is a highly promising technological alternative due to its low manufacturing costs and its straightforward integration in existing processes for the manufacture of microprocessors and other electronic chips.
"The creation of this platform is an initial success for our brand-new collaboration, and it illustrates the importance of combining material, process and integration know-how at an early stage. It also bears testimony to Arkema’s ability to develop new copolymers and to adapt its industrial resources to this demanding micro-electronics sector in terms of product performance and purity," says Ian Cayrefourcq, director Emerging Technologies at Arkema.
"Lithography based on nanostructured copolymers opens up very encouraging prospects in terms of performance and cost for the semiconductor industry. Cooperation between Arkema, an innovative world-leading chemical company, and CEA-Leti, a world-renowned institute in the integration of CMOS technologies, will help develop materials and processes directly transferrable and compatible with the industry’s standards," says Laurent Malier, CEA-Leti Director.