Precision detection of endpoint after the milling has reached targeted conductor during circuit modification by focused ion beam system is important. While the sensitivity of the endpoint detection can be enhanced by improved secondary electron collection and sample absorbed current monitoring, a detailed understanding of the endpoint signal distribution within a high aspect ratio (HAR) via is of great interest. This article presents an alternative model of HAR via milling endpointing mechanism in which a phenomenon of spatial distribution of the endpoint information within the HAR via is explained based on sputtering of the material from the targeted metal line and redeposition of the spattered material on the via sidewalls. Increased emission of the secondary electrons, resulting from the subsequent bombardment of this conductive re-deposition by the primary ion beam, is detected as the endpoint. A methodology for the future experimental verification of the proposed model is also described.

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