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Imec, ASML deal offers advanced litho tech

Posted: 13 Oct 2011 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:EUV lithography? semiconductor industry? 193nm?

Imec has inked a five-year development agreement with ASML Holding N.V. that will run from 2011 to 2015. This will allow ASML to install its 193nm immersion lithography tool, the NXT1950i system, at Imec by November this year. Imec is pushing forward with its EUV lithography with the installation of the production-ready EUV litho system NXE:3300B, the successor of ASML's NXE:3100 preproduction tool that was installed at Imec in Spring 2011.

According to them, the collaboration will set them at the forefront of next-generation technologies with the most advanced tools in a stable and proven environment. The availability of the most sophisticated infrastructure is crucial to stay ahead in an equipment intensive business such as the semiconductor industry, they stated. As such, the agreement also involves the suite of ASML's computational lithography tools and the advanced metrology platform, ASML Yieldstar S200.

ASML's NXE:3100

ASML preproduction scanner NXE:3100 for extreme UV lithography, installed at Imec's 300mm cleanroom.

The close interaction in Imec's semiconductor ecosystem provides ASMLfrom its future industry clientscrucial feedback on essential specifications to optimize their modern lithography tools. By combining the most advanced lithography tools and skills from Imec, ASML, Zeiss and Imec's global semiconductor ecosystem, Imec claims to represent the largest litho expertise center in the world.

"Our more than 25 years collaboration has proven to be a true win-win situation. Imec has been a development center for ASML to test the stability of and optimize its most advanced tools in a reliable environment together with the entire semiconductor ecosystem," stated Luc Van den hove, president and CEO of Imec. "This agreement is a confirmation of our long-term strategic and fruitful partnership."

"ASML's close partnership with Imec has given our joint customers early insights and learning into the capabilities of new chip manufacturing solutions, paving the way for their technology leadership and commercial success. We're pleased to commit to the next level of collaboration as we transition to EUV technology and enter the next decade of shrink technologies," commented Martin van den Brink, ASML's CTO.

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