A leading semiconductor capital equipment manufacturer has formed an applications development relationship with non-visual defect (NVD) inspection technology supplier, Qcept Technologies. The customer will purchase Qcept’s latest-generation ChemetriQ 5000 NVD inspection system, which is planned to be shipped and installed at the customer site during the second quarter of 2011.
According to Qcept Technologies the equipment manufacturer had previously collaborated with the inspection firm tool to help optimize product designs and processes. The company noted that new materials and structures being indotruced into the fabrication process of advanced ICs now require extremely precise control of wafer cleaning and surface preparation, which due to the high repeatability of cleaning steps sub-optimal cleaning process to cause significant yield loss at these advanced design nodes.
“Leading semiconductor equipment suppliers are constantly pushing the envelope to optimize their processes in order to meet their customers’ ever-more-demanding production requirements. For wafer cleaning and surface preparation in particular, emerging process challenges at the leading edge require innovative methods to detect and reduce the effects of NVDs to ensure tighter process control,” commented Bret Bergman, CEO of Qcept Technologies. “We are pleased that this leading equipment supplier has chosen to work with Qcept to optimize its cleaning processes with NVD inspection. Adoption of our ChemetriQ 5000 system continues to grow worldwide across the semiconductor ecosystem, including leading-edge device manufacturers and process equipment suppliers alike.”
The ChemetriQ 5000 platform is claimed to provide a rapid, full-wafer, inline detection of NVDs—such as organic and inorganic residues, metallic contaminants and process-induced charging.