Project Linx ambitions

The technology of integrated circuits (ICs) is ubiquitous in today’s connected world with its smartphones and tablets. “The Internet of Things” is the next digital revolution, rendering our homes, cars, and cities “smart”. The explosive need for ICs has to go hand-in-hand with production at low cost and high yield, so that next-generation electronic devices remain complexity of IC architectures necessitate well-controlled manufacturing with dedicated metrology at high resolution and appropriate penetration depth.

To overcome the limitations of current approaches as electron microscopy and optical metrology, we propose soft X-ray metrology with wavelengths of 10-30 nm because only this technology satisfies both requirements for high-volume manufacturing.

Since no imaging optics exists for this wavelength range, we advocate lensless imaging, specifically ptychography, which computes an “image” from a diversity of diffraction patterns.

LINX (Lensless Imaging of 3D Nanostructures using Soft X-Rays) is a collaboration between five major Dutch universities and both national and international industrial partners to realize a set of innovations relevant to the Dutch industry. These innovations are (1) tailoring the characteristics of high-harmonic SXR sources to ptychography; and (2) sub-wavelength ptychography using prior information.