Micron Technology, ASML MaskTools Enter Broad Collaboration Agreement
ASML MaskTools, a business unit of ASML Holding NV (ASML), and Micron Technology, Inc., today announced a comprehensive multi-year business agreement to enhance the capability of lithography tools. The agreement focuses on low k1 imaging solutions at and below the 95 nanometer (nm) node. As part of the agreement, Micron also acquired a global license for ASML MaskTools’ intellectual property portfolio for volume production use in Micron fabs.
The collaboration between ASML MaskTools and Micron relates to creating and improving practical applications for resolution enhancement techniques (RET) which extend the capability of lithography tools by improving the performance of key wafer imaging characteristics such as depth of focus, CD uniformity and process latitudes.
"This long-term agreement with ASML MaskTools demonstrates Micron’s leadership position in enabling advanced process and memory technology and our commitment to provide our customers with the most advanced chips possible," said Mark Durcan, Micron’s Chief Technology Officer and Vice President of R&D. "Our implementation of ASML MaskTools’ technology extends the useful lifetime of our equipment, thereby maximizing the value of our investments."
As part of the agreement, Micron will purchase ASML’s MaskWeaver™ for RET implementation and LithoCruiser™ for ASML scanner optimization. Additionally, Micron will supply ASML with high-end mask-making and mask-characterization services to help qualify ASML TWINSCAN™ ArF scanners for volume production at the 65 nm and 45 nm nodes.
"We are pleased to recognize Micron as an early adopter of our next generation optical extension technologies – CPL and DDL. Their involvement will lead to further development and product maturation," said Dinesh Bettadapur, president and CEO, ASML MaskTools. "ASML is the sole supplier of a complete, integrated product set, from mask design to wafer imaging – capable of meeting critical lithography requirements for leading-edge customers like Micron."