Nanometrics to Provide UniFire Metrology System for Advanced 3D Wafer-Scale Packaging

Nanometrics Incorporated (Nasdaq: NANO), a leading provider of advanced process control metrology systems used primarily in the fabrication of semiconductors, high-brightness LEDs, data storage devices and solar photovoltaics, today announced that a leading semiconductor foundry has ordered a UniFire(TM) 7900 metrology system for advanced 3D wafer-scale packaging process control.

This initial system will be delivered in the fourth quarter of 2010 to enable the foundry´s transition from development to high volume manufacturing in 2011.

"We are excited to announce that the UniFire has been selected by a leading foundry customer for their next-generation advanced packaging applications," commented Dr. Michael Darwin, vice president of the UniFire and Materials Characterization groups at Nanometrics. "The UniFire is an enabling metrology system in the rapidly growing wafer-scale packaging segment and has been adopted by multiple customers for through-silicon-via (TSV) process control, with measurements including critical dimensions (CD), depth and topography. The deployment of advanced packaging technologies such as TSV and micro-bump formation will enable cost and performance advantages for next-generation devices.

These emerging applications provide growth opportunities for Nanometrics, with new manufacturing process steps requiring additional optical metrology solutions."

"This win is indicative of our strategy to grow the company through acquisitions of leading-edge products and technologies that expand our business into emerging and high-growth market segments," commented Tim Stultz, president and chief executive officer of Nanometrics. "The UniFire enables us to offer new and enabling technology to our established logic and memory customers while increasing our penetration of leading foundry customers. As we look forward, the incremental market opportunity for advanced wafer-scale packaging process meaningfully expands our served markets and business growth outlook."

The UniFire has been put into production for both front-end-of-line and back-end-of-line semiconductor and magnetic device manufacturing processes, and for applications including advanced packaging, lithography, etch, chemical mechanical polishing (CMP) and thin film deposition. The UniFire is capable of high precision measurement of two-dimensional and three-dimensional structures for depth, CD, profile, and film thickness control for advanced device manufacturing processes.


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