Belmont, California, July 04, 2003 – Nikon Corporation has entered into a collaborative agreement with Dainippon Screen Mfg. Co., Ltd for the development of next-generation photolithography processes for semiconductor fabrication. Dainippon Screen has installed a SK-3000 (300 mm) coater/developer to be used with an advanced Nikon ArF scanner at Nikon’s Kumagaya Plant.
Lithography challenges are becoming paramount as we enter into the regime of 90 nm production and 65 nm development. Providing enabling lithographic solutions in accordance with ITRS (International Technology Roadmap for Semiconductors) and customer roadmaps, requires increasingly sophisticated levels of process performance. This level mandates optimized performance of the Coater/Developer and Scanner as a unified system.
Improvements in Critical Dimension uniformity and stability will occur both at the process and system levels. The SK-3000 installed in Nikon’s lab will be equipped with a new developing system with higher process performance, and a new resist coating system with improved coating uniformity. An advanced interface between the Coater/Developer and Scanner will be developed along with APC (Advanced Process Control) systems to ensure and improve process stability.
While the scope of the Nikon/Dainippon Screen joint effort is centered on equipment manufactured by the two companies, the ultimate goal is to develop an “open” solution that will provide benefits when either company links their tools with products from other equipment manufacturers.
Since 1980, Nikon Corporation has been revolutionizing lithography with innovative products and technologies. The company is a worldwide leader in lithography equipment for the microelectronics manufacturing industry with more than 7,200 exposure systems installed worldwide. Nikon offers the most extensive selection of production-class steppers and scanners in the industry. These products serve the semiconductor, flat panel display (LCD) and thin-film magnetic head (TFH) industries. Nikon Precision Inc. provides service, training, applications and technical support, as well as sales and marketing for Nikon lithography equipment in North America.
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This press release contains forward-looking statements as that term is defined in the Private Securities Reform Act of 1995, which are subject to known and unknown risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those expressed or implied by such statements. Such statements are subject to risks, uncertainties and changes in condition, particularly those related to industry requirements and other risks. The Company undertakes no obligation to update the information in this press release.
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Nikon Precision Inc.,
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