Product News


Trio of tools for CMP, anneal, energy monitoring

The Reflexion GT CMP platform targets copper interconnect planarization as well as tungsten applications for 4Xnm logic and memory. A dual-wafer architecture enables two wafers to be processed simultaneously on each platen, with the polishing heads independently controlled. A shield around each platen works in concert with an exhaust system to handle misting/aerosols, etc. The company says pad life is doubled with up to 30% less slurry usage. Throughput is 80wph for a 30k logic or 120k memory WSPM scenario (with 6kÅ incoming copper), the company claims.

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The Vantage Astra system targets millisecond annealing required for creating nickel silicide (NiSi) transistor contact layers in 45nm and beyond logic. The dynamic surface annealing (DSA) system uses a compact diode-stack laser to scan across the wafer in a series of passes, heating the surface directly below the beam to a depth of 100µm; the result is sub-millisecond exposure that allows for a very high maximum peak temperature, enabling effective phase transformation or dopant activation. Possible combinations include two millisecond chambers, or a hybrid that combines a spike chamber and a millisecond chamber. Throughput is claimed to be >40wph per two-chamber system. The company says silicidation enables up to 5% greater device speeds and up to 15× lower leakage; the system is extendible to high-k/metal gate applications.

The iSYS platform aims to help semiconductor fabs improve energy conservation and lower utility cost for abatement and vacuum pumping on process tools by >20%. Installed in less than a day on a wafer processing tool, it senses real-time changes in the process chamber and directs subsystems into predefined standby states. Built-in sensors and software enable remote monitoring of cumulative energy savings and tracking energy-sustainability progress. Applied Materials Inc., Santa Clara, CA; ph: 408/727-5555,

Wafer inspector for LED, MEMS

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The ICOS WI-2250 wafer inspector offers defect inspection of whole and diced wafers up to 200mm, with macroinspection sensitivity in the pre- and post-dice inspection (front- and backend) of high-brightness LEDs and MEMS manufacturing. The system incorporates advanced rule-based binning for real-time defect classification, advanced metrology capabilities, and faster throughput for inspection. KLA-Tencor Corp., Milpitas, CA; ph 408/875-3000,

Ashable hardmask films for sub-32nm

New ashable hard mask (AHM) plasma-enhanced chemical vapor deposition (PECVD) films for 32nm lithography patterning have up to 25% greater etch selectivity and up to 7% die yield improvements versus conventional amorphous carbon films, the company claims. Better within-wafer CDU facilitates patterning of dense, high-AR features. Using the new AHM films with the company's Vector PECVD platform enables AHM removal within a 1mm transition zone, ensuring CD uniformity within 2mm from the wafer's edge, and helps block moisture uptake. Novellus Systems Inc., San Jose, CA; ph: 408/943-9700, e-mail:

High-current implanter

The Optima HDx high-dose implanter features enhancements to maximize beam current, minimized beam setup time, and eliminate energy contamination. Spot beam technology and short beamline deliver drift beam currents up to 36mA. A patented AutoTune beam tuning system accelerates both tune times and success rates; a proprietary RadiusScan ensures across-wafer dose and angle process uniformity as well as repeatability. Axcelis Technologies Inc., Beverly, MA;ph: 978/787-4000,

300mm full-wafer DRAM test

The SmartMatrix 100 probe card for ≤5Xnm-node DDR2 and DDR3 DRAM devices incorporates a new architecture leveraging the company's MicroSpring MEMS contact technology, enabling pad pitches as small as 50µm and pad sizes as small as 40×50µm. It quickly reaches test temperatures and enables dual-temperature operation, with scrub consistency even on smaller pads and pad pitches. The new design also "virtually eliminates" thermal bow effects of traditional full-wafer-contact probe cards, the company says. A RapidSoak technology option enables reduced soak time. FormFactor Inc., Livermore, CA;ph: 925/290-4095,

MEMS product design platform

The MEMS+ environment offers a fully parameterized 3D design entry canvas to assemble complete MEMS devices using elements such as beams, plates, electrostatic combs, etc. Schematic symbols are placed in an IC schematic, and simulations are run in an analog mixed-signal simulator; the same model can be used for coupled MEMS and IC simulations. Results can be visualized back in the 3D environment to verify mechanical behavior. Coventor Inc., Cary, NC;ph: 919/854-7500,

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