Press Release

HEI Develops the World’s First Circuit Formation Technologies for 16 Gigabit Dynamic RAMs

By September 8, 1998 December 7th, 2020 No Comments

HEI (President: Kim Young-Hwan) announced on the 17th of September that it has developed the world’s first super fine circuit formation technologies that can be applied to processing next generation 16 gigabit DRAMs. HEI has recently succeeded in developing technologies for forming super fine circuit with 0.09 micron width, which is 1/1000 of hairwidth, and applied for patents on 10 related technologies.

Dr. Baik Ki-Ho at HEI’s Semiconductor Advanced Research Division said, “The recent development of super fine circuit formation technologies is signigicant in that it enabled HEI to shorten the period for development of 16 gigabit chips by 2 years and to obtain the core technologies needed to produce next generation 4 gigabit DRAMs or larger.

HEI has succeeded in forming circuit as fine as 0.09 micron by optimizing processing technologies using its electron beam exposure equipment, which is one of non-optical exposure device, and also by self-developing next generation stencil masks with excellent characteristics.

Exposure tools are the core equipment in semiconductor processing that forms circuit on wafers by using lithograhphic technique of letting light pass through masks with circuit drawn on it. The processing of 4 gigabit DRAMs or larger, which requires circuit formation technologies of using circuits thinner than 0.13 micron, needs non-optical exposure device and next generation mask technologies instead of the optical device and masks now in use.

Even though world’s leading semiconductor makers are developing non-optical exposure equipment and next generation semiconductor processing technologies, which uses the above mentioned equipment through International Sematech of U.S and SELETE of Japan, HEI is the first in the world to develop technologies for chips with 0.09 micron circuit that can be applied directly to developing products. When electron beam exposure tools are used instead of existing optical exposure tools, considerable increase of the time required for exposure process makes it hard for it to be applied at mass-producing stage.

However, HEI provided turning point for putting non-optical exposure technologies to practical use by cutting the processing time(when electron beam exposure tools are used) by 1/50, still using electron beam exposure tools. In order to use non-optical exposure tools such as electron beam, next generation stencil masks are needed instead of existing masks(quarts) which are used in optical exposure tools process now in use.

Although a few of research institutes overseas have the technologies to produce laboratory-use stencil masks, HEI can produce stencil masks at wafer FAB, meaning no additional investment is required in time of mass-producing and practical use of technologies for producing next generation masks are made possible using existing processing technologies.