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New Product: Novellus adds ashable hard mask process to ‚??VECTOR Extreme‚?? PECVD platform

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Novellus VECTOR Extreme AHM systemProduct Briefing Outline: Novellus Systems has now made available an ashable hard mask (AHM) process configuration for its ‘VECTOR Extreme’ PECVD platform. The new VECTOR Extreme AHM system is targeted at memory megafabs. More than 30 VECTOR Extreme platform systems are to be installed worldwide by the end of 2008, the company said.

Problem: The AHM market segment is expected to grow to $300M by 2012, driven by the challenges of advanced lithography. AHM films, deposited in a PECVD reactor, aid in pattern transfer and provide superior critical dimension control during etch compared to standard 193nm photoresists.

Solution: Novellus’ AHM technology employs a unique RF power configuration, optimized process gas chemistry and integrated post-deposition edge bevel film removal (EBR), to produce the high quality films, which are claimed to be the easiest to integrate for 45nm manufacturing and below. The VECTOR Extreme AHM system is capable of providing memory manufacturers throughputs in excess of 150 wafers per hour.

Applications: Ashable hard mask (AHM) memory processes.

Platform: VECTOR Extreme was launched in July of 2007 for the deposition of comparatively thick SiH4 and TEOS-based dielectric films used in memory chips. Capable of throughputs of up to 250 wafers-per-hour. VECTOR Extreme features a central wafer process chamber with a dual handling robot that allows the integration of up to three PECVD process modules on a single system.  Employing its multi-station sequential processing (MSSP) architecture, the process modules retain hardware transparency with VECTOR Express for ease of process integration between platforms.  In comparison to industry benchmarks, the system is claimed to improve capital productivity by greater than 25%, and shows a commensurate reduction of greater than 40% in the number of tools required in the fab.

Availability: July 2008 onwards.

Novellus VECTOR Extreme AHM system

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