As for research work, scientists of the Center for Collective Use “Microsystem Technology and Electronic Component Base” of MIET are engaged in it. As far as one can judge, R&D should be completed before the end of 2022. The order was received from the Ministry of Industry and Trade within the framework of the state program “Development of the electronic and radio-electronic industry”.
The team is quite large – it includes
, including young candidates of sciences and graduate students. On the basis of the Mikron plant and the Zelenograd Nanotechnology Center, it is planned to use the production capabilities of organizations to produce samples of a MEMS dynamic mask.
“This is an exploratory preliminary project, during which the very possibility of transferring an image using a MEMS dynamic mask is tested. We must show that the system works reliably, passes all tests and metrological tests. If this work is completed successfully, it will be followed by a development project to create lithographic installation,” said Sergey Alexandrovich Gavrilov, Doctor of Technical Sciences, Professor, Vice-Rector for Research at MIET.
The main tasks of research
Representatives of the project say that the main task of the research is the experimental verification of the main technological solutions in the field of maskless X-ray nanolithography. At the first stage of the project, it is planned to develop, manufacture and test MEMS dynamic mask models in two versions.
The first is the control of the X-ray transmittance. The second is the control of the X-ray reflectance. After studying the results, it is planned to create a “technical image” of the developed lithographic installation. The project participants declare that at this stage the parameters of the key components of the system will be developed and justified:
• X-ray source
• Optical system including dynamic mask MEMS
• Vacuum system
• Alignment and positioning system
The project team is studying the possibilities of developing a maskless X-ray nanolithography facility with a wavelength of 13.5 nm based on a synchrotron or plasma source. If the project is completed, then Russia will have its own equipment, which the country did not have before.
Project representatives declarethat the development will be carried out on the basis of both operating and launched in the country synchrotrons. In particular, the synchrotron of TNK Zelenograd, NRC Kurchatov Institute, plus domestic plasma sources will be used. Using these technologies, scientists hope to process semiconductor wafers with design standards of 28 nm, 16 nm and below.
The authorities plan to switch to 28-nm technology by 2030. It is worth noting that foreign manufacturers have mastered the 4nm process technology and are gradually implementing plans to develop chips using the 3nm and 2nm process technologies. The initiators of the project claim to develop by 2030 at least 400 prototypes of new types of electronics and to carry out at least 2,000 research projects.
What was up to 28 nm?
10 years ago, the production of chips using 90 nm technology was launched at the production facilities of Mikron. Not to say that the project was cheap – for its implementation was invested 16.5 billion rubles, of which Sitronics and Rosnano (project participants) invested 6.5 billion rubles each, and another 3 billion rubles. were borrowed.
In addition, about a year ago, the Ministry of Industry and Trade announced the financing of the development of Russian equipment for the production of chips using the 130-65 nm process technology. Those. we are talking about a technology that was breakthrough about 20 years ago. However, many industries use such chips.
Difficulties and concerns
In general, the project looks good, but there is a main problem here – if something goes wrong with the development of domestic lithographic systems, then the factory will be idle. And its maintenance costs hundreds of millions of rubles, regardless of how many chips are produced.
In addition, many points remain unclear, including stocks of components and raw materials for the development of lithographic systems. As we have already said, the same glasses for photomasks are imported. In addition, the ingots from which silicon wafers are cut are also imported, and the cutting equipment also needs to be delivered from abroad.
Be that as it may, if everything works out, then the Russian Federation will have its own production line for the production of chips, which are used in many industries. Technologies are not the newest, but they continue to be used.