Brion, Hitachi linking DFM technologies in new platform

November 28, 2006 – Brion Technologies and Hitachi High-Technologies are collaborating on a DFM platform that will enable chipmakers to detect, measure, and monitor optical proximity correction (OPC) defects during volume production of advanced semiconductors. Brion and Hitachi say the combined technologies in one interface will “vastly reduce the amount of time and number of operations required to generate a several-hundred point CD-SEM recipe for OPC evaluation.”

The companies say they are working with a joint semiconductor manufacturing customer to develop a common interface that works with Brion’s Tachyon lithography design verification and Hitachi’s DesignGauge scanning electron microscope (CD-SEM) metrology system. In the new platform/interface, OPC hot spots will be detected by Tachyon, which will send defect location, classification, and grouping information to be measured and monitored by Hitachi’s DesignGauge.

In a statement, the companies explained that the technologies are already complementary — Tachyon depends upon accurate CD-SEM measurements for design verification, while DesignGauge uses Tachyon output to automate recipe generation and control SEM wafer observations.

“To calibrate Tachyon, one needs to have the most accurate CD measurements possible; this impacts how the process model is built and ultimately the design’s verification,” said Jun Kanamori of Hitachi High-Technologies, quoted in the statement. “So an efficient interface between model construction and CD measurements is extremely useful. And after Tachyon has identified hot spots in a design, they can be verified with the SEM for closed-loop control of design and manufacturing.”

Eric Chen, CEO of Brion, hinted that the common Tachyon-DesignGauge interface “is only a first step” in a collaboration between the two companies to evaluate and leverage synergies between their technologies.


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