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Philips Analytical expects a major presence at Semicon Europa (16-18 April 2002). Besides showing its spectrum of leading-edge metrology solutions, the company is presenting its unique Lab-2-Fab support, which helps semiconductor manufacturers through the difficult and costly process and procedural transitions as they roll out new technologies from the R&D laboratory through to full-scale production.

This year, the company is announcing three new products: the general-purpose RQ Jade XRF Wafer Analyzer for film thickness and composition measurements, the RQ Jade Maximus Disk Analyzer for composition and uniformity measurements on heavy, thick samples like sputter targets as employed in the production of thin-film magnetic materials, and the MQ Garnet 300 Laser Ellipsometer/Reflectometer for thin-film transparent layers. On the stand will be a PQ Ruby Sub'tomic Laser Ellipsometer/Reflectometer which is optimized for characterizing UTGOs, and an X'Pert PRO MRD (Materials Research Diffractometer) which analyzes structure, composition, thickness, residual stress and texture of compound semiconductor materials. Philips will also be highlighting its E95-0200 SEMI-compliant HMI software package.

Philips' Lab-2-Fab support helps semiconductor manufacturers with the transition of devices from R&D, through pilot production, to full-scale production. The support is built into the company's Gem series, which has small footprint/faceprint, and suits cleanroom operation. It complies fully with 200 mm and 300 mm software and hardware standards, including SECS/GEM and AMHS (Automatic Material Handling System).

This Lab-2-Fab support is unique in an industry that is dominated by instrument manufacturers specializing in only one stage of product development (normally R&D, or full production). Currently, semiconductor manufacturers therefore have to repeat R&D start-up costs for the (often new) equipment used for pilot production, and again when devices reach full production. Philips reduces these costs by matching instrument specifications from one stage to the next, and making the results comparable from tool to tool.

The 300 mm RQ Jade XRF Wafer Analyzer characterizes all layers in advanced semiconductors, and features best-in-class repeatability figures of just 0.01% RMS for a typical Cu seed layer thickness measurement. The instrument takes accurate non-contact measurements of thickness and composition, contamination, dopant levels and surface uniformity for a wide range of process films. It is one of the few XRF analyzers to work with advanced low-k dielectrics. The RQ Jade features flexible manual wafer loading, and a simple cassette interface. A multi-wafer chuck accepts 150 mm to 300 mm wafers. The instrument is easy to upgrade to (pilot) production by adding load ports and automated handlers.

A special version -- the RQ Jade Maximus Disk Analyzer -- accepts the large, heavy targets (305 mm or 12 inch diameter by 10 mm thick, weighing up to 10 kg) that are used to sputter thin-film materials as used in for instance the hard disk industry. The Maximus can hence periodically check target composition to ensure material is being removed uniformly from the target, and hence deposited uniformly onto the disks.

The new ultra-precise MQ Garnet 300 laser ellipsometer/reflectometer measures thickness, refractive indices, absorption coefficients and reflectivity of transparent and absorbing films. Useful for both equipment makers and process development, the thin-film measurement tool allows simultaneous evaluation of single- and multi-layer structures.

The table-top/bench-top system can analyze transparent and absorbing films like ultra-thin (gate) oxides, low- and high-k materials, 193-nm ARC and resist, and SOI. It accepts and maps full 300 mm wafers, and measures films ranging from 0 nm to 30 microns thick. Offering long-term stability and Windows NT E95-0200 compliant software, the MQ Garnet 300 has unprecedented ease of use at an affordable price.

The PQ Ruby Sub'tomic ellipsometer/reflectometer has been tuned specifically to the measurement of ultra-thin gate oxides (UTGOs). The fully automatic instrument also accurately characterizes the latest dielectric materials. Like the MQ Garnet, it measures thicknesses, refractive indices and absorption coefficients of transparent films from 0 nm to 30 microns thick.

The PQ Ruby Sub'tomic improves the already very good repeatability of Philips Analytical's standard PQ Ruby to 0.025 Angstrom, even at the high throughput needed for in-line process control of semiconductor production lines. The instrument is therefore already ahead of tomorrow's ITRS (International Technology Roadmap for Semiconductors) requirements.

The X'Pert PRO MRD X-ray diffraction system can be used to measure compound semiconductor samples using a wide range of optics. Applications range from routine rocking curve analysis using a hybrid monochromator to detailed reciprocal space mapping to investigate very small deviations in symmetry and perfection. Batch programs allow data to be recorded from a range of different points on the sample and / or a range of different reflections.

Version 4 of X'Pert Epitaxy provides a comprehensive plotting and analysis package for single scans and diffraction space maps for cubic and hexagonal semiconductors. An interactive simulation and fitting dialogue has been introduced to allow automatic fitting of rocking curves. The results menu has been extended to include improved mismatch and relaxation calculations from both rocking curves and maps. A command line facility is provided for automatic analysis of routine data.

The PQ Diamond software optimizes Philips' metrology equipment to a customer's precise application. Designed to comply with SEMI's (Semiconductor Equipment Manufacturing Institute) E95 -- 0200 HMI (Human Machine Interface) standard, the software has touch-screen operation, powerful analytical capabilities and a fast response. Yet it is simple to use and requires virtually no training. The HMI reduces operator training across multiple tools, which in turn reduces costs and increases working flexibility.

Philips Analytical is making PQ Diamond its standard software platform for all Philips Analytical production control tools, thus creating a familiar and common approach that reduces Cost-of-Operation. The software is already bundled with the company's PQ Ruby, PQ Ruby Sub'tomic, and MQ Garnet 300.
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Publication:EDP Weekly's IT Monitor
Geographic Code:4EUNE
Date:Apr 8, 2002

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