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Crossing Automation Receives Order for ExpressConnect Integrated Automation Platform

Published on July 13, 2010 at 9:56 PM

Crossing Automation, Inc., a leading supplier of efficient, cost-effective front-end and back-end automation solutions and engineering services to high volume semiconductor equipment manufacturers, today announced that it has received an order for its ExpressConnectTM integrated automation platform.

The system includes Crossing’s SpartanTM equipment front end module (EFEM), Shuttle-LockTM, Load-Lock, SEC controller and AltaStream’s integration software. ExpressConnect will be implemented in the original equipment manufacturer’s (OEM’s) process tool targeting the 22 nm node. The win displaces the customer’s current automation platform vendor and the system is scheduled to ship in September 2010.

“This order validates our approach to wafer-level automation. Delivering low-cost, high-performance components that are highly configurable and reliable differentiates ExpressConnect from our competitors’ standard product offerings,” said Bob MacKnight, president and CEO of Crossing Automation. “This approach significantly shortens time to market for our customers and allows their R&D resources to stay focused on process development, where they provide value to their customers.”

Crossing’s modular approach to platform development allows the company to deliver standardized customization to equipment manufacturers. In this situation, the customer’s R&D budget was allocated for process development, leading them to seek an external solution that could address their specific process requirements. The ExpressConnect system allowed the OEM customer to integrate a proven platform for less than 10 percent of the cost of a proprietary development effort.

Crossing can achieve the platform cost effectiveness by implementing specific atmospheric and vacuum wafer handling modules that optimize tool throughput. All modules and subsystems have been reliability tested over tens of millions of cycles, ensuring handling performance.

“Development of an integrated solution for this OEM customer resulted from deep and extensive interaction with them to ensure we met all of their requirements. As part of this effort we were able to provide higher vacuum capability and particulate and contamination management. We also increased levels of software integration to further optimize the ExpressConnect platform,” added Larry Wise, vice president of engineering for Crossing.

Crossing Automation is a leading supplier of efficient, cost-effective front-end and back-end automation solutions and engineering services to high volume semiconductor equipment manufacturers. The company’s unique approach to automation solutions enables its customers to shorten time to market, lower development costs and reduce total costs. Through its front-end and back-end automation solutions, Crossing achieves critical manufacturing flexibility for OEMs and IC manufacturers alike.

Crossing’s Integrated Platforms

Crossing Automation’s ExpressConnectTM modular building block family of automation components delivers integrated atmospheric and vacuum substrate handling sub-systems with small footprints, low costs and high productivity for semiconductor manufacturing. Crossing also delivers a broad range of leading-edge, cost-effective 300 mm, 200 mm, and 150 mm component technologies to both OEMs and semiconductor manufacturers including isolation, robotics, and tracking. Crossing implements a system architecture that uses highly reliable linear transfer devices and simplified control algorithms to improve efficiencies and control reliability and is key to enabling a comprehensive, flexible, end-to-end automation solution.

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