Posted in | News | Nanoelectronics

Extending the Lifecycle of Test Wafers through Reclamation

Applied Materials, Inc., the global leader in Nanomanufacturing Technology™ solutions for the electronics industry, today opened its new 300mm Wafer Reclaim Center in Taiwan. Located in Tainan’s Science-Based Industrial Park, this 3,120m2 facility will include three cleanrooms and utilize Applied’s advanced process systems to provide customers with state-of-the-art wafer reclaim technology.

“This new capability expands Applied Materials’ opportunity to use our considerable process technology expertise to provide customers with new ways to drive down costs,” stated Mark Stark, vice president and general manager of Applied’s Fab Operation Services division. “Typically, wafers are the single largest consumable cost contributor for a fab. With an industry-wide shortage of silicon, the use of wafer reclaim services is expected to grow to help offset the limited availability of silicon and decrease non-product wafer costs. Our unique reclaim methods have demonstrated significant cost-of-ownership benefits for our customers, including higher wafer quality and increased process yields.”

Using its advanced manufacturing systems and software, Applied can extend the lifecycle of test wafers by over 45% to 11 uses per wafer – reducing customers’ costs for high quality, particle-free wafers – while conserving the world’s limited supply of silicon. The Center also features a unique, patented process for the non-destructive recovery of wafers containing carbon-based low k films that removes virtually no silicon from the wafer.

A study by SEMI in March 2007 indicates that the use of test wafers has increased in the semiconductor industry to represent approximately 15% of the total silicon wafer usage. This is due to an increased use of test wafers in 300mm wafer fabrication.

“We thank the Tainan Science Park Administration, local government and our customers for their support in helping us to establish this new facility to serve the semiconductor industry,” said Stark.

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