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AFM in silicon technology development

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Vladimir A. Ukraintsev, Silicon Technology Development, Texas Instruments Inc., Dallas, TX, 75265, USA


The International Technology Roadmap for Semiconductors (ITRS) predicts that atomic force microscopy (AFM) will become an in-line metrology tool starting at the 65-nm technology node. Others argue that AFM is not suitable beyond the 65-nm node due to probe-size limitations [1]. This article examines the current state of AFM in semiconductor technology development and manufacturing. Some key applications of AFM are reviewed. This current state is contrasted with upcoming requirements and limitations of metrology tools. The unique role of AFM in establishing across-CD metrology correlation and accuracy is emphasized.

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