Troubleshooting

Lithography

  • Whatever I do, my structures are always over/underexposed.

    The reason for this can be:

    • The current measurement goes wrong. Check if the measured currents are reasonable.
    • The magnification is not set up correctly. Please check the scales of your structure. They should match the scales in your design file.

    Especially a magnification that is off, can lead to pronounced effects.


  • An exposed square becomes a rectangle

    Your write filed calibration is not set up correctly. Consult the calibration pdf (in the customer cloud) on how to perform calibration.


  • In small structures I see “fracturing gaps”.

    You use a dwell-time that is to small for your SEM. The beam does not fully follow the voltage (inductance). You have two possibilities:

    • Reduce the current in order to increase the dwell time.
    • Use the “scanline” pattern generator for the critical parts of your structure.

  • In small structures i see distortions (mostly in some corners)
    • If a Beam blanker is present: It is most likely that this effect is caused by a to small beam settling time.
    • If no beam blanker is present. You can try to reduce the current. However, to get fully rid of this issue, you need a beam blanker.

  • I tried grey-scale lithography with an image/photo. The results are not what I expected.

    Your resist profile curve is not linear. Also your image is most likely not in linear color space (but in sRGB). Ask your resist vendor for profile data (height vs. dose). Depending on how the profile looks like, you can use the dose map settings or an external program, to adjust the values of your image to transform it to a linear color space and to match the condition color_intensity ~ dose.


  • All edges in my exposed structures look “wavy” and not straight at all. The precision is also quite “limited”.

    It is very likely that you are facing an electrical issue. A common issue are ground loops or poor grounding in general. Check if the lithography system and the SEM are connected to the same power line. Also check if they have a common ground.

Software

  • Where can I get the newest version of smile2?

    The newest version of smile2 can be found in the customer cloud.

    Note

    The version offered on our download page might not be the latest version. Always look in the customer cloud for the last version.


  • My colleague did steel my donlge. After he removed the dongle smile2 did quit after 30 sec. Is my unsaved work really lost?

    Yes it is. To avoid this issue, consider buying an additional license. We also offer time-limited licenses.


  • smile2 crashes!

    You found a bug. Please submit a bug report. If you want to get information about the status, include your email. If the issue is critical, please contact us. Usually, you then get a fix within a couple of days.


  • I want to save the scans in the document. However, if I save and reopen the document, the scans are gone.

    Scans are not saved by default. You need to enable this first. This setting can be enabled in the “Save options” of the “Document Settings”. If you want to enable this as a default for new documents, enable it in the “Project Settings”


  • If I zoom in to nm scales, the design sometimes becomes kind of “broken” and looks “wrong” (and “funny”).

    This is a known issue on some (rather common) graphic cards, and is caused by limitations of the Qt paint engine. We are working on a native OpenGL paint engine, that will solve this issue.


General

If something doesn’t work, do the following:

  • Do not panic
  • Ask your colleague
  • Collect all information about the issue and contact us at support@neomicra.com.