STMicroelectronics and CEA-Leti, the leading French semiconductor research institute, have signed an agreement for STMicroelectronics to join the new industry/research multi-partner program IMAGINE, led by CEA-Leti, which includes TSMC, for mask-less lithography for IC manufacturing.
This three-year program is meant to allow companies to assess a maskless lithography infrastructure for IC manufacturing and the use of MAPPER* Technology for high-throughput. The multiple e-beam lithography program covers a global approach to the technology, including tool assessment, patterning and process integration, data handling, prototyping and cost analysis.
"STMicroelectronics has been working for more than a decade with CEA-Leti on maskless lithography. Together, ST and CEA-Leti have established a full shaped-beam capability on ST's Crolles pilot line and demonstrated the insertion of e-beam technology in a standard CMOS process flow," said Joël Hartmann Silicon-Technology Development Director for STMicroelectronics, at Crolles, France. "Joining the IMAGINE program is a logical step for ST to get access to a mask-less lithography possible solution for future technology nodes."
"The IMAGINE program will benefit from the strong knowledge and support of STMicroelectronics in maskless technology," said Leti's CEO, Laurent Malier. "The experience of CEA-Leti in e-beam technology has been strengthened over the years by this partnership with ST for using e-beam for advanced technology demonstrators. With STMicroelectronics supporting the IMAGINE program, we are convinced we will succeed to make maskless lithography a viable solution."
* MAPPER's offices are located in Delft, The Netherlands, near Delft University of
Technology; MAPPER is delivering massively parallel electron beam platforms and this equipment delivery is part of the collaboration program.