17 Jun 2002
German companies combine their expertise to advance lithography at low wavelengths
Lambda Physik AG has founded a joint venture with Jenoptik Laser Optik Systeme GmbH for the purpose of developing and producing radiation sources in the extreme-ultraviolet range (EUV). The two companies each hold a 50 per cent stake in the new enterprise, named XTREME Technologies GmbH.
With sites in Göttingen and Jena, XTREME will develop electrically-excited discharge plasmas and laser-produced plasma sources. Lambda Physik is contributing its expertise in gas discharge and pulsed circuit technologies and in excimer and solid-state laser technologies. Jenoptik is contributing its expertise in solid-state laser development and in optics. XTREME will market the products, which will then be sold via Lambda Physik's distribution network.
"The founding of XTREME technologies accords with our goal of offering a four-wavelength strategy (248, 193, 157 and 13.5 nm) for microlithography. The shortest wavelength up to which excimer laser technology, of which we are the leading supplier, can be used is 157 nm," explained Dr Manfred Rahe, CTO of Lambda Physik. "The semiconductor industry favors EUV as the successor technology. Our goal is to offer customers a complete range of light source products with shorter wavelengths for the production of more efficient microchips."
The first prototypes of the EUV beam sources are expected to go into operation at application sites in 2002.