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New Product: Peter Wolters new wafer lapping tool offers higher productivity

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AC-2100L systemProduct Briefing Outline: Novellus Systems subsidiary, Peter Wolters has developed a new version of its microLine double side lapping system for prime silicon wafers. The new AC-2100L system features independently driven inner and outer pin rings, automatic force calibration, and in-situ wafer thickness metrology for closed-loop process control. The system can process up to twenty 300mm wafers in one batch, while exceeding the latest wafer geometry requirements.

Problem: Double side lapping is becoming the technology of choice for prime silicon wafer manufacturing due to its combination of high throughput, precise wafer geometry control, and lower cost of consumables.

Solution: The new AC-2100L lapping system, employs independently-driven inner and outer pin rings that are claimed to enable maximum process control. Automatic force calibration compensates for weight loss of the upper lapping wheel due to typical process wear, ensuring accurate force control over the entire wheel life. Contactless gauges control the lapping wheel gap dimension, thus ensuring repeatable within-batch and batch-to-batch wafer thickness throughout the lapping process. Additionally, the system can be configured with a non-contact, optical gauge developed by the firm for in-situ measurement and control of wafer thickness. This industry-first technology provides wafer manufacturers with the sub-micron precision required to meet leading-edge wafer geometry requirements.

Applications: 300mm wafer lapping.

Platform: The AC-2100L's high productivity is enabled by its new, larger lapping wheel, which has an outside diameter of 2100mm. The larger wheel allows the use of five carrier rings, resulting in a twenty wafer batch size. For ease of cleaning, maintenance and wheel replacement, the machine head on the AC-2100L swivels out to provide service access to the lapping components. The user-friendly operator interface (HMI) is based on the well-established AC-2000 platform.

Availability: February 2011 onwards.

Non-contact, optical gauge provides in-situ sub=micron control of wafer thickness (Sample size: 460 wafers).

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