ASM International introduced the Intrepid® ESTM 300mm epitaxy (epi) tool for advanced-node CMOS logic and memory high-volume production applications. Intrepid ES introduces innovative closed loop reactor control technology that enables optimal within wafer and wafer-to-wafer process performance, critical for today’s advanced transistors and memories. Furthermore, Intrepid ES reduces the cost per wafer significantly for a 7nm epi process compared with prior node processes. The new tool has been qualified for production at a leading-edge foundry customer, and is targeting production applications in other industry segments as well. To date, over 40 reactors have been delivered.
“Over the past several years, multiple customers have been very clear that there is a need to address several technical and cost challenges in the epi market,” said Chuck del Prado, President and Chief Executive Officer of ASM International. “Intrepid ES is the result of a focused development program to address major challenges in this market, including film non-uniformity, process repeatability, tool uptime and high cost per wafer. This early success of the Intrepid ES clearly demonstrates that we are on track in addressing our customers’ emerging epi requirements.”
The new Intrepid ES tool is based on a combination of reactor and platform design improvements. It demonstrates improved film performance and enhanced reactor stability. Fundamental to its technology is an isothermal reactor environment in which the wafer is processed. This provides consistent and repeatable temperature control across the wafer and wafer-to-wafer.