Imec and ASML sign long-term collaboration to deliver the most advanced litho technology to the global semiconductor industry

(Nanowerk News) Imec has signed a new agreement with ASML for a period of 5 years (2011-2015). The agreement enables imec and the world's leading semiconductor players which are part of imec's advanced IC technology scaling program, to stay at the forefront of next generation technologies. The availability of the most advanced infrastructure is crucial to stay ahead in an equipment intensive business such as the semiconductor industry. Imec and ASML's continued collaboration guarantees the global semiconductor ecosystem to work on the most advanced technologies and tools in a stable and proven environment.
Already in November 2011, ASML will install its state-of-the-art 193nm immersion litho tool, the NXT1950i system. Imec will also be able to further accelerate its world-renowned work on EUV lithography with the installation of the production-ready EUV litho system NXE:3300B, the successor of ASML's NXE:3100 preproduction tool that has been installed at imec in Spring 2011. Moreover, the agreement involves the suite of ASML's computational lithography tools and the advanced metrology platform ASML Yieldstar S200.
ASML preproduction scanner NXE:3100 for extreme UV lithography, installed at imec's 300mm cleanroom
ASML preproduction scanner NXE:3100 for extreme UV lithography, installed at imec's 300mm cleanroom.
The close interaction in imec's world-leading semiconductor ecosystem, provides ASML - from its future industry clients - crucial feedback on essential specifications to optimize their next-generation lithography tools.
Building on 25 years of experience, and by combining the most advanced lithography tools and skills from imec, ASML, Zeiss and imec's global semiconductor ecosystem, we now represent the largest litho expertise centre in the world.
"Our more than 25 years collaboration has proven to be a true win-win situation. Imec has been a development center for ASML to test the stability of and optimize its most advanced tools in a reliable environment together with the entire semiconductor ecosystem;" said Luc Van den hove, President and CEO of imec. "This agreement is a confirmation of our long-term strategic and fruitful partnership."
"ASML's close partnership with imec has given our joint customers early insights and learning into the capabilities of new chip manufacturing solutions, paving the way for their technology leadership and commercial success. We're pleased to commit to the next level of collaboration as we transition to EUVtechnology and so enter the next decade of shrink technologies," said Martin van den Brink, ASML's Chief Products and Technology Officer.
Source: imec