Helium ion beam lithography on fullerene molecular resists for sub-10 nm patterning

Xiaoqing Shi*, Philip Prewett, Ejaz Huq, Darren M. Bagnall, Alex P. G. Robinson, Stuart A. Boden

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

27 Citations (Scopus)


Helium ion beam lithography (HIBL) is an emerging technique that uses a sub-nanometre focused beam of helium ions generated in the helium ion microscope to expose resist. It benefits from high resolution, high sensitivity and a low proximity effect. Here we present an investigation into HIBL on a novel, negative tone fullerene-derivative molecular resist. Analysis of large area exposures reveals a sensitivity of ~ 40 μC/cm2 with a 30 keV helium beam which is almost three orders of magnitude higher than the sensitivity of this resist to a 30 keV electron beam. Sparse line features with line widths of 7.3 nm are achieved on the ~ 10 nm thick resist. The fabrication of 8.5 half-pitched lines with good feature separation and 6 nm half-pitched lines with inferior but still resolvable separation is also shown in this study. Thus, sub-10 nm patterning with small proximity effect is demonstrated using HIBL using standard processing conditions, establishing its potential as an alternative to EBL for rapid prototyping of beyond CMOS devices.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)74-78
Number of pages5
JournalMicroelectronic Engineering
Publication statusPublished - 2 Apr 2016
Externally publishedYes


  • Helium ion beam lithography
  • Helium ion microscope
  • Fullerene
  • Molecular resist
  • Nanolithography
  • Next-generation lithography

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