Subject: Re: Polling the Users on the level of interest in using HSQ negative tone Ebeam resist in the next year.
From: "James W. Conway" <>
Date: Wed, 05 May 2010 15:39:49 -0800

Hello Alex, Sonia, and Raith User Community:

We have just last week received a new batch of HSQ in the XR-1541 formulation.  This is a 6% solids mixture in MIBK by volume and is suitable for films in the 100 nm plus range.   I have a number of wafers that I prepared on silicon and Quartz to aid in my process verification using my old process with some adjustments.
This included a spin speed (f) resist thickness study yielding several thicker than specification (spec. is ~ 100 nm.) for Users interested in testing thicker films.

My intention to to finish exposing this batch of wafers ASAP so as to not be influenced by any aging or degradation effects while I redefine my process sheet.

Please see me during my office hour and/or mornings in the Ebeam Lab if you would like to try an exposure or two on my wafers.  All I request is you provide me with your data for exposure dose and if you obtain great results a few SEM's of this work.  All Users whom contribute will be listed on the process suite resulting from our collaborative work.

This material is stored in the SNF resist refrigerator and unlike the ZEP - 520 does not have to be warmed to room temperature before dispensing.
Most people using this material, particularly in Quartz and Glass substrates will also need to apply ESPACER 300Z to reduce sample surface charge up.

All the Very Best,

James Conway

[Link to Dow description of HSQ]        [MSDS for XR-1541]

[Thomas Net News announcement regarding  XR-1541]

On 4/29/2010 9:32 PM, Alex Neuhausen wrote:
Hi James,
Did you end up ordering the HSQ? It would be an ideal material for a process I'm attempting, trying to make a dielectric layer with pores that are tens of nanometers in diameter.

On Mon, Mar 8, 2010 at 8:01 PM, James W. Conway <> wrote:

Good Morning Ebeam Users:

I am sending this email out to my Users to poll on your level of interest in having a new batch of Hydrogen Silsequioxane (HSQ) negative tone Ebeam resist ordered for this year.  I just received a very expensive quotation from DOW Corning with a minimum order of Four 250 ml bottles for $1365.00 / bottle for a total of $5460.00 USD.  This is a great investment in cost for SNF for what I think is much more material than we could possibly utilize in the lab before the material batch life expires and performance and quality of the result starts to degrade.

Currently I in contact with the Dow technical sales representative in hopes that we can break this order into four shipments spread over a year or more time if possible. But I expect they will not be compliant to this request as they are accustomed to much larger quantity orders.

Hydrogen Silsesquioxane (HSQ) is a very high resolution negative tone ebeam resist with good etching characteristics and can also be used as a spin-on-glass  or dielectric, as well as for planarization and a gap / via filling layer. In other fabrication applications, various mixtures containing HSQ can be used for passivation layers and is also the base material for Dow Corning's XLK low dielectric constant (k) materials.  Single Pixel lines in the 9 - 13 nm line width and larger, with dots as small as 9 - 10 nm diameter were achieved using the RAITH system at low voltage.  Other groups have reported lines and pitches in the 10 nm 20 nm pitch range with various exposure parameters.

Working together with Filip Crnogorac and Bing Dai in late 2008 we developed a very capable HSQ process here at SNF, attached for your review.

Thank you for your support!

James Conway
Ebeam Lab.