Purification System clears process gases of metal/moisture.

Press Release Summary:

Combining chemisorption and physisorption, PICO-TRAP Ultra-Purification System removes volatile metal impurities and moisture from critical process gases used by semiconductor manufacturers. It features cryogenic, fully-regenerable purification column and can remove moisture down to less than 20 ppb in hydrogen chloride. Applied to a variety of gases, system also removes volatile metals including iron, molybdenum, chromium, titanium, nickel, and manganese.

Original Press Release:

Matheson Tri-Gas Electronics Announces PICO-TRAP Ultra-Purification System for Process Gases

New Technology Platform Removes Volatile Metal Impurities and Moisture from Critical Process Gases

BASKING RIDGE, N.J. - July 9, 2008 - Matheson Tri-Gas Electronics today introduced its patented PICO-TRAP(TM) Ultra-Purification System for removing volatile metal impurities and moisture from critical process gases used by semiconductor manufacturers. The PICO-TRAP System combines the principles of chemisorption and physisorption to achieve levels of process gas purity unmatched by conventional purification technologies. PICO-TRAP incorporates Matheson Tri-Gas Electronics' custom-engineered cryogenic, fully-regenerable purification column to deliver one of the most impurity-free process gases available today.

The system, which is one of eight finalists for SEMI's "Best of West" awards to be announced during next week's SEMICON West trade show, enables microelectronics manufacturers to minimize impurities that interfere with process stability, which is critical to mass producing reliable electronic devices.

Semiconductor manufacturers are constantly striving to boost throughput, increase yields and lower defect densities at every process step, most of which involve the use of high purity gases. The PICO-TRAP System delivers these results by removing moisture down to low detectable limits, such as less than 20 PPB in hydrogen chloride (HCl) - a level that has not been achieved using standard purifiers. This extreme level of purification is attained even with high impurity challenges of 25 PPM moisture or more when the source runs to a cylinder dry condition. The system also removes volatile metals including iron (Fe), molybdenum (Mo), chromium (Cr), titanium (Ti), nickel (Ni) and manganese (Mn), which inherently affect yield and defect densities in key fabrication processes. In addition, non-conventional impurities such as methane (CH4), silicon tetrafluoride (SiF4) and hydrogen fluoride (HF) can be significantly reduced in highly reactive process gases by the PICO-TRAP System.

"Our new PICO-TRAP Ultra-Purification System gives chipmakers access to the most effective gas purification processes available to support their migration to the next generation of semiconductor technology," said Terry Francis, Chief Technologist for Matheson Tri-Gas Electronics.

In recent studies by Matheson Tri-Gas Electronics researchers, the PICO-TRAP System demonstrated that silicon-epitaxial operations at both high and low temperatures were enhanced by purifying hydrogen chloride etchant gas. The improved process results where achieved by decreasing moisture content to less than 20 PPB-a 10X improvement over standard purification methods-and reducing volatile metal impurities to nearly undetectable limits.

Matheson Tri-Gas Electronics, a division of Matheson Tri-Gas, is working with its strategic partners at various locations to confirm the process results in real-world manufacturing environments. The PICO-TRAP System will be on display at SEMICON West 2008 in San Francisco, where the system is competing for one of SEMI's "Best of West" awards. Begun this year in conjunction with SEMICON West, the awards recognize important product and technology developments in the microelectronics supply chain. Finalists have been selected based on their financial impact on the industry, engineering or scientific achievement, and/or societal impact.

In addition to the gases currently being studied by Matheson Tri-Gas Electronics, the PICO- TRAP Ultra-Purification System's technology can be applied to several key process gases including corrosives, hydrides, halocarbons, hydrocarbons, laser gases and other specialty gases and mixes.

This new purification system is the latest technology offering from Matheson Tri-Gas Electronics designed to enhance its customers' wafer-processing capabilities at the 45 nm technology node and beyond. In April, the company announced that it has entered a four-year agreement with IBM CORP. to jointly develop new manufacturing materials and processes that will enable the next generation of semiconductor technology for 32nm and beyond.

About Matheson Tri-Gas

Matheson Tri-Gas is a single source for industrial, medical, specialty and electronics gases, gas -handling equipment, high-performance purification systems, engineering and gas- management services, and on-site gas generation with a mission to deliver innovative solutions for global customer requirements. Matheson Tri-Gas is the largest subsidiary of the Taiyo Nippon Sanso Corporation Group, one of the world's five largest suppliers of industrial, specialty and electronics gases.

For further information, contact:

Mr. Stephen Stroud, General Counsel, 908-991-9333


Beth Sullivan

Marketing Communication Specialist

Matheson Tri-Gas, Inc.


(215) 648-4026

Christine K. Scully

Marketing Communication Manager

Matheson Tri-Gas, Inc.


(201) 825-1331

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