Posted in | Nanoelectronics

Collaboration Lowers Development Time and Cost Through Accurate Process Modeling

Mattson Technology, Inc., a leading supplier of advanced semiconductor process equipment used to manufacture integrated circuits (ICs), and Synopsys, Inc., a world leader in software and IP for semiconductor design and manufacturing, today announced a collaboration to offer calibrated process models for flash annealing equipment used on the 45-nanometer (nm) node and beyond. Through this collaboration, Synopsys' Sentaurus Process models will be calibrated to the Mattson Millios™ flash-assist Rapid Thermal Process (fRTP™) system. As a result, engineers will be able to simulate and optimize process conditions before costly silicon processing, thus lowering development time and cost.

The continual scaling of CMOS technology demands new processing techniques to meet the strict International Technology Roadmap for Semiconductor (ITRS) targets for junction depth and sheet resistance in the source and drain extensions of CMOS transistors -- one of the critical device regions requiring precise process control. To meet this challenge, Mattson has developed the Millios fRTP system, which features a powerful flash lamp and highly accurate temperature control and monitoring that allow engineers to optimize process conditions for simultaneous achievement of shallow junction depth and low sheet resistance. The Millios system combines high throughput, precise process control and process flexibility to provide a high-volume IC manufacturing solution for milli-second annealing.

Sentaurus Process is Synopsys' multi-dimensional process simulator that is part of the TCAD Sentaurus suite. It is equipped with a set of advanced process models that include default parameters calibrated with data from equipment vendors and provides a predictive framework for simulating a broad range of technologies from nanoscale CMOS to large-scale high-voltage power devices. The combination of these technologies creates a powerful solution for optimizing the flash-annealing process using the Millios fRTP system.

"Process technologies are increasingly complex and costly to develop, and therefore TCAD tools with models calibrated to specific process conditions are very important to guide experimentation and process optimization," said Howard Ko, senior vice president and general manager of the Silicon Engineering Group at Synopsys. "Collaborations with leading equipment vendors such as Mattson Technology are a critical component of our strategy to deliver advanced and accurate TCAD tools to the market."

Jeff Gelpey, Mattson fellow, added, "Process development with advanced tools such as Millios becomes very time consuming and expensive if done only with experimentation. This collaboration between Synopsys and us enables the use of Sentaurus TCAD in conjunction with models calibrated to our equipment so that the development engineer can optimize the process more quickly and explore many more options."

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