Genetic algorithms to improve mask and illumination geometries in lithographic imaging systems
This paper proposes the use of a genetic algorithm to optimize mask and illumination geometries in optical projection lithography. A fitness function is introduced that evaluates the imaging quality of arbitrary line patterns in a specified focus range. As a second criterion the manufacturability and inspectability of the mask are taken into account. With this approach optimum imaging conditions can be identified without any additional a-priori knowledge of the lithographic process. Several examples demonstrate the successful application and further potentials of the proposed concept.