Traditional Monte Carlo modeling of the electron beam-specimen interactions in a scanning electron microscope (SEM) produces information about electron beam penetration and output signal generation at either a single beam-landing location, or multiple landing positions. If the multiple landings lie on a line, the results can be graphed in a line scan-like format. Monte Carlo results formatted as line scans have proven useful in providing one-dimensional information about the sample (e.g., linewidth). When used this way, this process is called forward line scan modeling. In the present work, the concept of image simulation (or the first step in the inverse modeling of images) is introduced where the forward-modeled line scan data are carried one step further to construct theoretical two-dimensional (2-D) micrographs (i.e., theoretical SEM images) for comparison with similar experimentally obtained micrographs. This provides an ability to mimic and closely match theory and experiment using SEM images. Calculated and/or measured libraries of simulated images can be developed with this technique. The library concept will prove to be very useful in the determination of dimensional and other properties of simple structures, such as integrated circuit parts, where the shape of the features is preferably measured from a single top-down image or a line scan. This paper presents one approach to the generation of 2-D simulated images and presents some suggestions as to their application to critical dimension metrology.
Pub Type: Journals
critical dimension, linewidth, metrology, modeling, Monte Carlo, scanning electron microscope