Patent Number: 6,169,931

Title: Method and system for modeling, predicting and optimizing chemical mechanical polishing pad wear and extending pad life

Abstract: A computer implemented system and method for modeling, predicting and optimizing a Chemical Mechanical Polishing (CMP) system for polishing semiconductor wafers and other types of substrates used in the manufacture of integrated circuits. The method and system comprises a pad wear and conditioning model that predicts the polishing effectiveness of each sampling point on the polish pad based upon the polishing pad and substrate parameters, the pressure and speed between the wafer and the polish pad, and on the amount of polishing the point has performed in a simulated CMP hardware configuration using the CMP system recipe settings. The model determines the change in pad roughness and thickness for each sampling point on the pad. The model results are used along with wafer scale uniformity and feature scale planarity model results to optimize pad life and determining optimal recipe settings for the CMP process.

Inventors: Runnels; Scott R. (San Antonio, TX)

Assignee: Southwest Research Institute

International Classification: G06F 19/00 (20060101); G06F 17/10 (20060101); G06F 019/00 ()

Expiration Date: 01/02/2018