EV Group (EVG), a leading manufacturer of MEMS, nano and semiconductor wafer-processing equipment, said today it will install a fully automated, ultra-violet step-and-repeat nanoimprint lithography (UV-NIL) system at AMO GmbH (AMO) in Germany.
UV-NIL is a next-generation lithography technology and a contender to succeed optical lithography for the 32-nm node, according to the International Technology Roadmap of Semiconductor (ITRS). Applications include integrated photonic devices, nanoelectronics, life sciences, patterned media and next-generation memories.
"Nanoimprint lithography is an innovative patterning technology that provides a lower cost-of-ownership model compared to current manufacturing lithography tools," said Dr. Peter Podesser, chief executive officer of EV Group. "EV Group has the largest installation base worldwide for single-step imprinting equipment and this new NIL stepper enhances our product portfolio substantially."
AMO, which has been participating in joint-development programs with EVG in the area of advanced UV-NIL since 1997, is a leading research center for the technology. In addition, AMO is a charter member of NILCom, the consortium founded by EV Group that is dedicated to speeding the commercialization of NIL. NILCom is a technology platform supported by an established infrastructure and qualified processes, including leading technology companies and research centers. Its mission is to establish a high-volume manufacturing NIL platform in nano-electronics, data storage, life sciences and opto-electronics.
The special features of EV Group's new NIL stepper include a dual-stage alignment approach in lower pressure environments, which enhances pattern fidelity compared to other technical solutions in ambient pressure. The step-and-repeat NIL system targets sub-50-nm overlay alignment accuracy and a lithography resolution down to 10 nm. The system will be delivered in the first quarter of 2005.