Patent Number: 6,311,319

Title: Solving line-end shortening and corner rounding problems by using a simple checking rule

Abstract: A methodolgy is described which allows a variety of optical proximity corrections to be added to a mask pattern at low cost and with a view to minimizing the number of electron beam exposures that will be needed later when the reticle is prepared. The basic approach is to add serifs and/or hammerheads to the vertices of the mask pattern on the basis of a small number of simple rule checks. The first check is for the presence of an overlapping pattern at the next level. If this is not detected noting is added at the vertex in question. If some overlap is etected, a predefined search area (at the same mask level) is quickly scanned and, if another stripe is found to be located within a preset distance, serifs are added at the appropriate vertices. If no stripe was found, a second search area, further away, is scanned and if a neighbouring stripe is detected this time, larger serifs are added. If the second search also comes up empty, a hammerhead is added at the appropriate line end. The method may be refined by using additional searches, if so desired.

Inventors: Tu; Chih-Chiang (Tauyen, TW), Hsieh; Ren-Guey (Ping-Tung, TW)

Assignee: Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company

International Classification: G03F 7/20 (20060101); G03F 1/14 (20060101); G06F 007/60 (); G06F 017/10 ()

Expiration Date: 10/30/2018