KLA-Tencor Introduces Next-Generation in-Situ Plasma Etch Wafer Temperature Measurement Product

KLA-Tencor (NASDAQ: KLAC) today released its next-generation in-situ plasma etch wafer temperature measurement product, the EtchTemp SensorWafer™. The newest SensorWafer from KLA-Tencor's SensArray division, EtchTemp captures the effect of the process environment on production wafers and offers unique new capabilities to robustly characterize the high-power, high-frequency etch recipes proliferating at 65nm nodes and below.

The EtchTemp SensorWafer enables etch engineers to further visualize, diagnose, and control their processes and process tools, through the significantly increased process measurement capabilities. Enhancements include:

  • Up to 7kW total radio frequency (RF) power and RF immunity for use in any reactor
  • The ability to collect data without modification of process recipe or tool/robot settings
  • Enhanced spatial resolution, with 32 sensors within 10mm of the wafer edge, and offering 60 percent increased radial coverage

“One of the key challenges for etch engineers today is matching chambers to achieve consistent performance across the entire toolset. Additionally, smaller processing windows make chamber matching difficult, and higher RF power recipes make it harder to achieve Cpk (process capability) goals,” said Larry Wagner, senior vice president and general manager SensArray division. “With this new tool, etch engineers will have an accurate and reliable means for capturing critical etch process data, as well as the ability to characterize a full range of RF power and frequencies for all chambers currently on the market.”

The EtchTemp SensorWafer, supported by the PlasmaSuite Software package, is designed specifically for chamber matching, post-PM qualification, trouble-shooting and process development. Key features for these applications include advanced RF shielding, enabling accurate temperature measurement at high RF powers as well as all frequencies and reactor designs; 65 temperature sensors allowing increased wafer edge resolution; all electronics totally encased within silicon substrates, enabling thin 1.2mm profile resolves tool clearance issues; and advanced manufacturing processes bringing increased reliability and durability.

With EtchTemp’s highly accurate measurement of plasma etch temperatures, engineers will have access to previously unavailable data, gaining information on the dynamic response to diverse recipe steps as well as chamber-to-chamber variations. The data captured by the EtchTemp can also be used by equipment engineers to qualify tools and ensure chamber health.

Currently, the EtchTemp is the only product of its kind on the market today. The EtchTemp is already in production use at three major etch OEM vendors, as well as a major Memory IDM company, with repeat orders being received from each of them.

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