Aviza Technology Ships Omega fxP Etch System to STMicroelectronics

Aviza Technology, Inc., a supplier of advanced semiconductor capital equipment and process technologies for the global semiconductor industry and related markets, today announced it has shipped its Omega fxP deep silicon (DSi) etch system to STMicroelectronics. The system is being used for manufacturing leading-edge MEMS (Micro Electro-Mechanical Systems) devices at ST's new 200mm facility in Agrate, Italy; Europe's first 200mm volume production MEMS fabrication plant.

The Omega DSi system is equipped with 4 process modules, each capable of multiple applications for volume production. The principle applications are high-rate etching (greater than 30 micron/min) of deep cavities that encapsulate MEMS devices, and etching deep trenches stopping on an oxide isolation layer.

"During the selection process, Aviza was able to demonstrate their technical capabilities and meet our production requirements for two key etch processes," said Patrizia Introini, General Manager of ST's Agrate Manufacturing Operation. "In addition, Aviza has demonstrated fast response times and a strong global service and support infrastructure, which are very important criteria for our suppliers. These factors made Aviza the ideal candidate to support STMicroelectronics' etch technology requirements for MEMS manufacturing."

The number of consumer applications incorporating MEMS devices continues to grow, including microphones in cell phones, accelerometers and gyroscopes in consumer gaming applications, optical MEMS for TVs, and automotive sensors. As of 2006, the European MEMS manufacturers represented 16-percent market share, or $6 billion, of the global MEMS market (Source: SEMI, November 2006). Overall market figures have indicated growth forecast of about 100% in the five years from 2005 to 2010, with the worldwide MEMS market approaching $10 billion by 2010.

"STMicroelectronics is a valued customer and long-term partner of Aviza. We are very pleased that they have selected our deep silicon etch system for volume production of MEMS devices," said Kevin Crofton, Vice President and General Manager, PVD/CVD/Etch Business Unit of Aviza Technology, Inc. "STMicroelectronics is at the forefront of MEMS device manufacturing and our deep silicon-etch technology offers a unique solution for this growth market."

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