A method for fabricating masks and reticles useful for projection lithography systems. An absorber layer is conventionally patterned using a pattern and etch process. Following the step of patterning, the entire surface of the remaining top patterning photoresist layer as well as that portion of an underlying protective photoresist layer where absorber material has been etched away is exposed to UV radiation. The UV-exposed regions of the protective photoresist layer and the top patterning photoresist layer are then removed by solution development, thereby eliminating the need for an oxygen plasma etch and strip and chances for damaging the surface of the substrate or coatings.
STATEMENT OF GOVERNMENT INTEREST
This invention was made with Government support under contract no. DE-AC04-94AL85000 awarded by the U.S. Department of Energy to Sandia Corporation. The Government has certain rights in the invention.