Model OPC is developed based on eigen decomposition of an aerial image expected to be produced by a mask pattern on a surface of a resist. With the eigen decomposition method the aerial image intensity distribution around a point (x, y) is accurately described in the model. A scalar approach may be used in the eigen decomposition model which treats the light wave through the mask as a scalar quantity. A eigen decomposition alternatively may use a vector approach which utilizes a vector to describe the light wave and the pupil function. A predicted SPIF may be generated from the aerial image which may be used to verify the mask modeling process by comparing the predicted SPIF to an experimentally determined SPIF. The model OPC, once calibrated, may be used to evaluate performance of a mask and refine features of the mask.


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