When research labs need to produce semiconductor prototypes or small quantities for testing, it’s often too expensive to place an order with a wet process production line supplier or to purchase complete wet process stations. Modutek has developed innovative tabletop models that are less expensive than full-sized wet process manual stations and take up much less room. They support the most common wet process cleaning, etching, and stripping steps, and Modutek can customize the units for special applications. The new Modutek tabletop units are easy to install and ideal for small-quantity R&D applications.
Modutek’s Table Top Units Are Feature-Rich and Versatile
Modutek has designed its new tabletop wet processing units to satisfy various R&D needs. The Teflon tank models support acid process steps such as KOH etch and buffered oxide etch (BOE), while stainless steel models support solvent process steps such as solvent resist strip. Tanks are available for ambient temperature or temperature-controlled operation, and they can be static or re-circulating with a filter and an all-Teflon fluid path. The temperature-controlled models have precise controls with rapid and even heating of the bath. The tanks come with temperature and level alarms and a drain interlock.
The compact and simple design of the tanks makes them easy to use, and operators can quickly get excellent results. The standard units that support the most common wet process steps allow the production of many different types of semiconductors. Modutek can customize its tabletop units to support additional silicon wet etching processes as required.
Modutek’s Table Top Units Support KOH Etch
KOH etching is popular because it delivers precise results using a relatively safe process. As such, it is well-suited for tabletop R&D applications. The etch rate depends on potassium hydroxide (KOH) concentration and temperature in the process solution. The etch direction can also be influenced by the silicon lattice’s orientation and the silicon’s boron doping. Different etch control strategies allow operators to etch various shapes into the silicon wafer.
The concentration of KOH may vary from 10 percent to 50 percent, but it is usually at around 30 percent. The orientation of the silicon crystal lattice means that the etch rate is faster in one direction, and Boron doping stops the etch progress in the direction in which the boron is found. These control factors are determined by the design of the etch shapes before the start of the process. Once etching has begun, the temperature allows operators to further control the etch rate and influence the shapes of the etched cavities. Because KOH etches can be controlled in different ways, it is the etch process most commonly used in Modutek’s tabletop units.
Using Modutek’s Table Top Units for Sub-Ambient BOE Etch and Solvent Applications
BOE etching is used to etch patterns in silicon dioxide films or to remove such films from the silicon wafer surfaces. The etching solution contains hydrofluoric acid, and a low temperature reduces consumption. The units that support BOE are the circulating, filtered models that are also fitted with a heater/chiller. Sub-ambient operation down to 10 degrees centigrade is possible.
Solvents used in semiconductor manufacturing steps, such as solvent resist strip, require stainless steel tanks and special safety features. Solvents, such as acetone, are flammable, and Modutek’s tabletop units include measures to prevent fire and explosions. Modutek can customize solvent and acid tabletop units to support other wet-process applications and add special features as needed.
Modutek Can Provide Custom Units for R&D Applications
Modutek has extensive in-house experience designing and building silicon wet etching equipment. If you need equipment to support R&D functions, tabletop units are an excellent option that can be customized to support many wet-process applications. Contact Modutek for a free consultation to discuss your application requirements.