Gigaphoton Inc., a major lithography light source manufacturer, announced today that it has achieved 43W output at 100kHz from its second prototype laser-produced plasma (LPP) light source for EUV lithography scanners.
The 43W output was achieved at 2.4 percent conversion efficiency (CE). This result represents another critical milestone in achieving production-level laser system performance. Gigaphoton aims to achieve 150W output on its prototype system by the end of 2014, and 250W output on a full EUV high-volume manufacturing (HVM) system by 2015.
Gigaphoton has been pursuing its own unique development of LLP light sources. The milestone was confirmed using a prototype LPP system, which generates EUV light by irradiating tin (Sn) droplets with a solid-state, pre-pulse laser and a CO2 main pulse laser. The tin debris generated from the irradiation is mitigated through the combination of a high-power, superconducting magnet and Sn etching using H2 gas.
Gigaphoton has focused on developing unique technologies that enable high-output, stable, and economical (cost-effective) LPP light sources since 2002. As a result, it has introduced multiple unique technologies, including <20um droplet-on-demand technology, the optimized combination of short-wavelength, solid-state laser pre-pulse and CO2 laser main pulse to irradiate an Sn droplet, and magnetic debris mitigation. The recent achievement exemplifies Gigaphoton’s highly advanced technical capabilities, which continue to bring the company closer to mass production of LPP light sources.
Gigaphoton’s LPP light source technology extends the lifetime of the droplet generator by utilizing ultra-small tin droplets that are ejected on demand, resulting in longer life for parts and, ultimately, reduced downtime and cost. In addition, high EUV output CE is achieved through the optimized combination of short-wavelength, solid-state pre-pulse laser and CO2 laser as the main pulse. This technology contributes to the real possibility of achieving efficient, high-output EUV light sources. In order to maximize the life of the collector mirror, a superconducting magnet generates a powerful magnetic field that guides the unwanted debris resulting from the thermal expansion of the tin droplets towards the tin catcher. This results in the further reduction of cost and downtime.
“I am very excited about the huge progress we have made in realizing our vision of delivering a highly efficient, high-output, low-cost, stable LPP light source,” said Hitoshi Tomaru, President and CEO of Gigaphoton. “We will accelerate the development of our LPP light source to meet the industry’s intense demand for HVM-level EUV lithography tools.”