Abstract: Cost and complexity associated with OPC and masks are rapidly increasing to the point that they could limit technology scaling in the future. This paper focuses on demonstrating the advantages of regular design fabrics for OPC simplification to enable scaling and minimize costs for technologies currently in volume production. The application of such a simplified OPC flow results in much smaller mask data volumes due to significantly fewer edges compared to the conventional designs and OPC flows. Moreover, the proposed approach enables reduced mask write times, hence lower mask costs.
We compare OPC performance and complexity on standard cell designs to that of layouts on a regular design fabric. We first demonstrate advantages and limitations within an industrial model-based OPC solution. Then, a simplified rulebased OPC solution is discussed for the Metal 1 layer. This simplified OPC solution demonstrates a 70X run time improvement and an order of magnitude reduction in both the output edge count per unit shape and shot count per unit shape while maintaining the printabalility advantages of regular design fabrics. The simplified OPC also demonstrates a 50% reduction in mask-write time. Finally, the benefit of regular design fabrics for OPC simplification and mask cost reduction at a 32nm node is discussed.
Keywords: DFM, Regular Design, OPC, Yield