Automation Metrology Platform addressses 450 mm requirements.

Press Release Summary:

Customizable to allow for integration of specific wafer staging, metrology modules, optics, wafer alignment mechanisms, and other components, Atlas provides OEMs with 450 mm metrology automation solution that also handles 300 mm metrology requirements. Industry standard 300/450 mm capable EFEM is used to align and transfer wafers from loadports to inspection station, while airflow and pressure balance between process stage and EFEM is optimized to ensure clean wafer transfer.

Original Press Release:

Owens Design Addresses Emerging 450mm Metrology Requirements with Atlas 450mm Automation Metrology Platform

Customizable Platform Reduces 450mm Development Costs and Speeds Time to Market While Still Supporting 300mm Metrology Needs

FREMONT, Calif. -- Owens DesignInc., a leading design and manufacturing service provider to the semiconductor, data storage and solar capital equipment markets, today expanded its Atlas metrology automation platform offering with the introduction of a 450mm version. Designed to address the semiconductor industry's emerging need for 450mm evaluation platforms, Owens Design's new offering provides semiconductor OEMs with a customizable 450mm metrology automation solution that will significantly reduce their development costs and time to market. Capable of handling both 300 and 450mm metrology requirements, the new Atlas platform provides semiconductor manufacturers with a clear 450mm upgrade path while continuing to support current metrology needs.

Owens Design offers semiconductor capital equipment manufacturers a proven methodology to reduce tool development costs, minimize technical risk, and speed their time to market. By working closely with an established design and manufacturing company, a capital equipment company can focus its internal efforts on its core technology. In turn, the design and manufacturing services company can focus on integrating this new core technology into a system level platform that has been optimized to meet the equipment manufacturer's performance specifications.

"While it is clear that leading semiconductor fabs will be requiring 450mm evaluation tools from their suppliers within the next year, it is unlikely that 450mm systems will go into volume production for another five or more years," said John Apgar, president of Owens Design. "As a result, tool vendors will be required to continue to support 300mm production, while simultaneously developing 450mm tools. This situation will be further complicated by the substantial differences that exist between 300 and 450mm SEMI standards. By partnering with Owens, semiconductor tool OEMs can significantly reduce development costs and time to market, while being sure that their new 450mm offerings are compliant with SEMI standards."

The Atlas platform uses a well-established industry standard 300/450mm capable EFEM to reliably align and transfer wafers from the loadports to the inspection station.  Overall airflow and pressure balance between the process stage and the EFEM has been optimized through CFD modeling to ensure clean wafer transfer.  The customizable metrology automation platform has been designed to allow for wafer-level thermal and vibration isolation to ensure a controlled environment for tool-to-tool matching.  A standard power distribution and control system with a GUI interface has been integrated into the system and, when combined with the required connectivity software, the platform will meet all 450 and 300mm factory software interface requirements.  The Atlas tool platform has been designed to meet Semi S2 (operator safety) and Semi S8 (operator ergonomics) requirements.

The Atlas standard metrology automation platform is customizable to allow for the integration of customer-specific wafer staging, metrology modules, optics, wafer alignment mechanisms, and other components.  Owens Design will customize the automation platform frame, skins, airflow, handling, and service access to meet specific customer needs.

Atlas 450mm Metrology Automation Platform Specifications

--  Wafer Sizes: 300mm, 450mm

--  Substrates Types: Silicon

--  Repeatability (at wafer hand-off location)

-  X,Y,Z axis: +/- 300mm

-  Theta axis: 0.1 degree

--  Cleanliness:

-  Front side: < 0.05 particles at 0.10 um, PWP

-  Backside:  100 particles at 0.10 um, PWP

-  Airborne: No degradation to ISO Class 1 environment

--  Reliability

-  MTBF > 1,500 hours

-  MTTR < 2 hrs

-  MTBS > 6 months

-  MTBI > 1,000 hours

About Owens Design

Owens Design specializes in the engineering and manufacturing of capital equipment. Located in Silicon Valley for over 25 years, they have been a strategic partner in the design and build of complex production tools for many leading technology companies. Owens Design is a service company that engineers and manufactures their customers' products from concept, through alpha, beta, pilot and on-going production.  Owens Design's development process results in a rapid design cycle with concurrent manufacturing introduction.  Owens Design has and continues to be an innovative and reliable partner for equipment companies in the semiconductor, solar and related industries.

For more information please contact

CONTACT: Christopher Castillo, Castle Communications, +1-408-244-0657,


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