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Posted: November 9, 2009
Rudolph's Automated Data Analysis Software Improves Yield in MEMS Inspection
(Nanowerk News) Rudolph Technologies, Inc., a worldwide leader in process characterization solutions for the semiconductor manufacturing industry, announced today that Touch Micro-System Tech (tMt), a major manufacturer of micro-electro-mechanical systems (MEMS) located in Taiwan, has reported a substantial reduction in per-wafer inspection time using Rudolph’s NSX® Inspection System and Discover® Data Analysis software. Discover, which is the NSX’s automated data analysis program, allows the user to rapidly identify, classify, sort and diagnose defect causes.
“The success of this effort reflects a growing market segment among MEMS manufacturers seeking to reduce defects and improve manufacturing yields as they bring numerous new applications into high-volume production,” said Rajiv Roy, Rudolph’s vice president of business development and director of back-end marketing.
“Automated macro defect inspection with the NSX System is a key component of our strategic plan to improve the yield of our manufacturing processes and ensure the quality of our products,” said C. S. Yang, project manager, CEO Office at tMt. “We have dramatically reduced our per-wafer inspection time with the automated NSX System. Although we use processes similar to those found in semiconductor manufacturing, we face many unique challenges, such as complex patterns and extreme topography. In this regard, the tool’s ability to automatically classify defects is extremely valuable.”
Roy added, “While some MEMS applications are well established, such as vehicle accelerometers and print heads, a host of exciting new applications are in development and promise explosive growth in the MEMS industry. A few examples are micro projectors and orientation detectors for cell phones. We believe that automated macro defect inspection will be a critical enabling technology as manufacturers move these new applications into high-volume production. This order clearly demonstrates the value tMt sees in the unique capabilities of the NSX Inspection System and Discover Data Analysis software.”
Rudolph’s NSX automated macro defect inspection tool uses image-based optical inspection technology to detect defects occurring in microelectronics manufacturing processes. It offers significant improvements in speed, accuracy, repeatability and reproducibility when compared to manual inspection procedures. Discover Data Analysis software automatically classifies detected defects based on operator defined characteristics, allowing the user to quickly direct appropriate attention to those defects with the greatest impact on process yield.
In 2004, the MEMS Business Unit of Walsin Lihwa Group was spun off and became Touch Micro-System Tech. The base of operations, the world’s first 8-inch MEMS foundry plant, was established in the Taoyuan Youth Industrial Park in Yangmei, Taiwan.
Rudolph Technologies is a worldwide leader in the design, development, manufacture and support of high-performance process control metrology, defect inspection and data analysis systems used by semiconductor device manufacturers. Rudolph provides a full-fab solution through its families of proprietary products that provide critical yield-enhancing information, enabling microelectronic device manufacturers to drive down costs and time to market. The company has enhanced the competitiveness of its products in the marketplace by anticipating and addressing many emerging trends driving the semiconductor industry's growth. Rudolph’s strategy for continued technological and market leadership includes aggressive research and development of complementary metrology and inspection solutions. Headquartered in Flanders, New Jersey, Rudolph supports its customers with a worldwide sales and service organization.