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Posted: May 03, 2011

Nanometrics UniFire Metrology Tool Adopted for Advanced Packaging Development of Next Generation Memory Devices

(Nanowerk News) Nanometrics Incorporated, a leading provider of advanced process control metrology systems, today announced that a major Korean memory manufacturer has accepted its UniFire™ 7900 metrology system for process control of advanced packaging of DRAM devices. The metrology tool will be used in development of through-silicon via (TSV) technology, projected to be a key enabling feature of next generation DRAM designs. With this placement, the UniFire system has now been adopted by four of the top seven semiconductor manufacturers worldwide.
The UniFire tool offers customers a broad range of features to control their micro bump, redistribution layer(s), and TSV patterning, etch and deposition processes, including measurement of critical dimensions (CD), registration, and depth/height/profile, as well as the ability to measure wafer bow/shape and film thickness.
"High precision measurements of TSV, micro bump, and redistribution processes are critical to enable high-yield DRAM devices for next generation wafer scale packaging," said Dr. Michael Darwin, Vice President of the UniFire and Materials Characterization Groups at Nanometrics. "The UniFire offers a unique, non destructive, 3D metrology capability allowing full surface topography control while reducing the need for multiple, independent metrology tools. This capability makes it an indispensable tool to ensure a higher yielding and quality manufacturing process with reduced cost of ownership."
According to market research company Yole Developpement, the overall market for 3D IC related equipment is projected to grow significantly in total revenue over the next five years with a CAGR of more than 60%. The growth will be mainly driven by the emergence of 3D TSV stacked memories, wide I/O interface in logic ICs as well as MEMS, CMOS image sensors and other 3D stacking applications.
"Our UniFire system continues to show promise as it is adopted by market leaders and proven to be a powerful and versatile tool," said Dr. Timothy J. Stultz, president and chief executive officer. "The UniFire's application in process control for wafer scale packaging applications meaningfully expands our served markets and opportunity for business growth."
About Nanometrics
Nanometrics is a leading provider of advanced, high-performance process control metrology systems used primarily in the fabrication of semiconductors, high-brightness LEDs, data storage devices and solar photovoltaics. Nanometrics' automated and integrated metrology systems measure critical dimensions, device structures, overlay registration, topography and various thin film properties, including film thickness as well as optical, electrical and material properties. The company's process control solutions are deployed throughout the fabrication process, from front-end-of-line substrate manufacturing, to high-volume production of semiconductors and other devices, to advanced wafer-scale packaging applications. Nanometrics' systems enable device manufacturers to improve yields, increase productivity and lower their manufacturing costs. The company maintains its headquarters in Milpitas, California, with sales and service offices worldwide. Nanometrics is traded on NASDAQ Global Select Market under the symbol NANO. Nanometrics' website is http://www.nanometrics.com.
Source: Nanometrics (press release)
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