Dai Nippon Printing (DNP), producer of semiconductor photomasks, and Molecular Imprints, producer of nanopatterning systems and solutions, are collaborating to speed production of nanoimprint lithography for high-volume semiconductor device manufacturing. DNP is the official provider of funds and support for Molecular Imprints to develop a new mask replication platform aimed at lowering the cost of imprint masks. A necessary move if imprint technology infrastructure is going to move into volume-production applications.
By using Molecular Imprints' Jet and Flash Imprint Lithography technology, the mask replication will occur at significantly higher throughputs compared to traditional methods. The program aims to develop technology to work for the 22nm half-pitch node.
A research fellow on this project commented: "Our industry partnerships allow DNP to gain knowledge and expertise on enabling cutting-edge technologies, which in turn allow us to provide our customers with access to solutions to meet the semiconductor industry's ever-growing lithography mask demands at the earliest possible date. This collaboration with Molecular Imprints gives DNP an important advantage in the area of imprint lithography, and will enable us to lead the way in supporting the semiconductor industry's imprint mask needs."
"This partnership with DNP is a key component of our overall strategy to accelerate adoption of our J-FIL technology initially for advanced non-volatile memory production," stated Mark Melliar-Smith, CEO of Molecular Imprints. "DNP is a pioneer in the development and commercialization of sub-30nm half-pitch imprint masks… DNP is helping to ensure the availability of low-cost imprint masks to address the growing global demand within the semiconductor industry for high-resolution, low cost-of-ownership lithography."