Wafer inspection system
The Iris wafer and die inspection system offers a range of options and capabilities for detecting visual defects in circuit patterns, contamination, or process damage: probe marks, ink dots, residual films, through-silicon vias, bumps, saw, pattern, incomplete etch, resist, scratches, cracks and chips, large-scale contamination, passivation, and more. Identified defects are noted with failure a code on a wafer map, offering graphical as well as data analysis of wafer inspection both during and post-scan; the wafer map is exportable in a variety of formats for offline analysis or downstream processing. The system is available with manual visual inspection on a semiautomatic stage, or with automated inspection using the company's Pilot pattern recognition system. Choice of optics allows for defect analysis on defects as small as 3µm. Options include inking, vibration isolation, status signal tower, and various optics packages. SemiProbe, Winooski, VT; 203/264-8397, firstname.lastname@example.org, www.semiprobe.com.
The Element family of hard and semi-hard CMP pads, featuring a hybrid polymer and patented in-situ molded groove technologies, combine the removal rate and planarization benefits of hard pads with lower defectivity levels of softer pads (one-tenth the levels of traditional hard pads, the company claims). The pads are available with various groove types and depths, including a proprietary "S-Groove" design, as well as modulated pad properties for hardness, pore size, and pore density. NexPlanar, Hillsboro, OR; 503/619-2345, email@example.com, www.nexplanar.com.
New 40nm and hydrophobic filters
A new set of 40nm-rated filters are intended for use with chemicals in wet processes and distribution systems, providing 40nm retention while maintaining the flow of 50nm filters; drop-in substitution can reduce particle counts and lead to reduced processing times, higher flow rates, and faster bath turnovers. Another set of hydrophobic filters is for bulk high-purity chemicals used in semiconductor and electronics manufacturing, with pore size rating ranging from 0.1-0.03µm. Both use a proprietary high-flow ePTFE (expanded polytetrafluoroethylene) filter media, improving flow over other filters with the same retention rating. W.L. Gore & Associates, Elkton, MD; 410/506-5556, firstname.lastname@example.org, www.gore.com.
GreenTape 9k7 is a low-temperature, lead-free glass-ceramic dielectric tape for advanced high-frequency (up to and beyond 100GHz), microwave, and millimeter wave electronic circuit applications. Incorporation of proprietary crystallizable glass, with alumina fillers for added mechanical strength, improves its dielectric properties and process capabilities; the dielectric constant is stable even when refired, according to the company. It is available with compatible gold and silver conductive materials as well as co-fired embedded resistor materials. DuPont Microcircuit Materials, Research Triangle Park, NC; 800-284-3382, mcm.dupont.com.
The 450PM series of probing stations, based on and directly upgradable to the company's 4060 model, targets "everyday analytical probing," according to the company. Features include direct lead screw drive of the X-Y stage and 4-point platen support, with configurability to specific applications (options include probe card holders, thermal chucks, various types of manipulators, vibration isolation tables, and camera systems). It supports up to 200mm wafers with 1µm stage resolution, and comes in two models (one for just manipulators, another that can accommodate probe cards.) Micromanipulator, Carson City, NV; 775/882-2400, email@example.com, www.micromanipulator.com.
Halogen-free solder paste
The Multicore HF108 lead-free, halogen-free solder paste has zero deliberately added halogens, but retains reflow and stability characteristics normally associated with halogen-containing materials (for which the common benchmark is a maximum of 1500ppm). The product has "excellent" high-speed print capability, the company claims, and a shelf life of four weeks (room temperature) to six months (refrigerated). Henkel, Irvine, CA; 949/789-2500, www.henkel.com/electronics.