First 450mm Wafers Patterned with Immersion Lithography Displayed

A collection of the first fully patterned 450mm wafers are on display at SEMICON West this week at the newly merged SUNY CNSE/SUNYIT exhibit, booth 517, located in the Moscone Center’s South Hall. The wafers will be on display throughout the exhibition and showcased in the 450 mm Technology Development Session on Thursday July 10th.

Fully patterned 450mm wafers have been shown before, most notably those produced using Molecular Imprints’ Imprio nanoimprint lithography (NIL) tool. At SEMI’s ISS meeting in Jaunary 2013, Intel’s Bob Bruck famously held such a wafer before the crowd.

But the 450mm wafers on display this week were produced using Nikon’s 193 immersion scanner, making it the first of its kind using conventional lithography tools now in use for 300mm wafer production.

“These first 450mm wafers are tangible proof that the industry’s transition to this next generation technology is on track and gaining momentum,” said Paul Farrar, Jr., Vice President for Manufacturing Innovation of the newly merged SUNY CNSE/SUNYIT institution and General Manager of the G450C.

The Nikon immersion scanner will join existing 450mm infrastructure at the Albany NanoTech Complex in April of 2015 in accordance with the project timeline.  This critical milestone will enable G450C founding members and CNSE to perform 10nm and below, full wafer photolithography, while optimizing tool configuration and performance.

In July of 2013, New York’s Governor Cuomo announced a $350 million partnership between the newly merged CNSE/SUNYIT and Nikon to develop next generation 450mm photolithography technology. Nikon and the newly merged CNSE/SUNYIT brought about a first of its kind immersion lithography scanner online in less than 12 months, enabling the vital wafer exposures that will further advance the industry’s transition from the current 300mm wafer platform to the next generation 450mm wafer platform.  The wafers that presented at SEMICON West are the first produced in support of the G450C, a public-private partnership headquartered at the NanoTech complex in Albany, NY.

“Nikon is very pleased to have achieved this key milestone, and we are intent on beginning the next phase of this program, said Nikon Corporation Senior Vice President and Semiconductor Lithography Business Unit General Manager, Toshikazu Umatate. “450mm scanner development is progressing on target to deliver the performance and productivity innovations that will deliver reduced cost per die, which is essential for the continuation of Moore’s Law.”

To date, more than $350 million in 450mm wafer tools have been installed at the Albany NanoTech Complex.  With the arrival of the Nikon immersion photolithography tool, the investment will swell to over $700 million.

One the first fully patterned 450mm wafers produced using conventional 193 immersion lithography.

One the first fully patterned 450mm wafers produced using conventional 193 immersion lithography.