Understanding the light-matter interaction of photoresist for EUV lithography

Leuven - Master projects/internships
More than two weeks ago

You will work together with a team of lithography specialists within an international environment in a modern 300 mm semiconductor cleanroom using advanced tools at the leading-edge technology. You will be trained in commercial and entrepreneurial skills necessary to join the academic research with the industrial needs.

In the past few decades, photolithography has been a key industrial process to scale down and fabricate integrated circuits. The process of scaling down has been mainly through continuous shortening of wavelength of the exposure tools and development in photoresists chemistry. However, as the current process has reached its limits, further improvements are necessary to continue the miniaturization trend. This can be done by reducing the source wavelength from current 193 nm (Deep UV) to 13.5 nm (Extreme UV), to print features of sub-5 nm with the process called Extreme ultraviolet (EUV) lithography.


EUV lithography, which is still in research phase, is deemed to be the future of semiconductor industry. But in order to push this to high-volume-manufacturing (HVM), better performing photoresists are needed. Current EUV photoresist platforms have suboptimal performance with problems like low resolution, low sensitivity and high line-edge-roughness. And to optimize and synthesize better EUV photoresist platforms, improved understanding of the light-matter interactions is needed. This can be achieved by exposing simple chemical platforms with EUV radiation and analyzing the change in the chemistry.


In the frame of this project, student will expose different lithography-based chemical platforms (such as simple polymers, monomers of resist materials, etc.) in EUV full field scanner, and analyze the change in chemistry using different characterization tools (such as Infrared (IR) spectroscopy, gel permeation chromatography (GPC), Raman spectroscopy and Elastic Recoil Detection (ERD)). This will improve his/her understanding of the lithographic process and various chemical characterization techniques. The student will work in an international environment with state-of-the-art tools and interact with multiple partners present at imec.


To effectively complete the research, student should have prior knowledge about different chemical characterization techniques, and basic knowledge about radiation chemistry. He/she should be able to plan design of experiments and work effectively on imec's state-of-the-art tools.


Type of project: Internship, Thesis, Combination of internship and thesis

Duration: 9 months

Required degree: Master of Engineering Technology, Master of Science, Master of Engineering Science

Required background: Chemistry/Chemical Engineering, Materials Engineering, Nanoscience & Nanotechnology

Supervising scientist(s): For further information or for application, please contact: Danilo De Simone (Danilo.DeSimone@imec.be)

Imec allowance will be provided

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