SBIR Phase I: High-Speed, Low-Cost Maskless Lithography
National Science Foundation
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Small Business Information
4750 Cortland Drive, Jackson, WY, 83002
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged:
AbstractThis Small Business Innovation Research Phase I research project will investigate the feasibility of using a high-speed linear array of micro grating light modulators (GLM) for cost-effective maskless lithography. Current maskless lithography tools are low-throughput instruments designed for the highest resolution markets (50-200 nm). ALCES proposes a maskless, high-throughput, lithography tool for the 0.5 - 1 um resolution range. The proposed tool will use a 4096-pixel linear array of grating light modulators as a software-reconfigurable and reusable lithographic mask; this is the largest and fastest light modulator available. A linear array of light, modulated by the GLM, would be focused and reduced by optics to ~0.5um resolution and directed to the wafer. The expected throughput will be over 100 times faster than current maskless lithography tools and comparable to mask-based stepper aligners. If successful the proposed tool, with the appropriate light source and optics, has applications outside of the semiconductor industry, in areas such as cell isolation, DNA synthesis, rapid prototyping, and printed circuit board production. The proposed innovation would also have an impact in education and research in academic institutions and government facilities. Maskless lithography would be an affordable technique to quickly fabricate new devices and provide hands-on education in university labs. Ultimately, devices and techniques developed in the academic research community enhance and stimulate innovations in manufacturing.
* information listed above is at the time of submission.