Using the KOH Etching Process with Modutek’s Teflon Tanks

Potassium hydroxide-KOH etching is an efficient chemical process that allows for precise impressions to be made within a body of silicon. The process uses DI (deionized) water in combination with heavy alkalinity (pH levels greater than 12); the solution is then thermally adjusted for the appropriate degree of etching needed. This process allows for greater precision than other forms of etching when it comes to manufacturing silicon wafers.

What Are the Benefits of Using KOH Etching?

The precision KOH etching grants is very beneficial to the product’s outcome. Due to its chemical composure and procedural approach, dry etching is more apt to create physical flaws; it also can make for a more hazardous environment, as it risks the exposure of toxic — even explosive — chemicals.

KOH etching, on the other hand, is almost entirely aquatic. The liquids for the etching process are contained within Modutek’s own Teflon Tanks, meaning that exposure to hazardous chemicals is drastically reduced to create a safe environment for manufacturing. The structuring behind the process also means that it can easily be set up for repeat manufacturing; the resources required for the etching are more stable and affordable, meaning that clients can duplicate their etchings at a much more feasible rate.

How Do Teflon Tanks Bolster the KOH Etching Process?

Modutek’s Teflon Tanks are designed with the foresight to emphasize the maximum potential KOH etching can provide. Furthermore, each Teflon Tank is fashioned to cater to the specific needs of the client, regardless of unorthodoxy. In unison with wet bench equipment, these Teflon Tanks greatly reduce the impurities other methods of etching may establish, providing you with a more reliable and consistent output every time.

The Teflon Tanks can be thermally adjusted to operate between 30 — 100º C (86 — 212º F), and on average can heat up at a rate of 2 — 3º C per minute, though smaller or larger tanks may have varying thermal increase rates. Thermal output can be mustered either from inline Teflon heating, or from submersion within an overflow bank for each type of Teflon Tank. Each tank is also fitted with cooling coils that can quickly reduce the solution’s temperature.

There are two types of Teflon Tanks that support KOH etching: Temperature Controlled Re-circulating Baths (TFa Series), and Temperature Controlled Static Baths (TI Series). These two series of Teflon Tanks are designed with overlapping covers to minimize the loss of water during the etching process; they also boast the ability to eliminate concentration deficiency.

Because Modutek designs their Teflon Tanks with the client’s specifications in mind, the customization each tank receives is advantageous to the desired end result. Dual heating methods produce a quick, balanced aid to water-based etching. Drains and valves can be installed into the tanks for safe and easy clean-up. Remote timers, controllers, or even a data interface can be equipped to make a simple process even simpler.

When compared to other forms of etching (whether wet or dry), Modutek’s support of KOH etching produces more precise and affordable results in a safer and more expeditious work environment. Teflon Tanks can be produced individually or en masse depending on the output the client is in need of. Each tank can also be fitted with a number of practical options that can improve the etching process dramatically.

No client should work with an environment or product that diminishes the quality of their manufacturing process; customization leads the way for an innovative and effective product. Modutek’s support of KOH etching in their catalytic Teflon Tanks will provide exceptional results for clients that use this process.

How Modutek’s Wafer Fabrication Equipment Provides Optimum Results

How Modutek's Wafer Fabrication Equipment Provides Optimum ResultsIn 1980, Modutek began manufacturing wet-processing and wafer fabrication equipment for the semi-conductor industry. Working with industry leaders Modutek has stayed focused to their roots by providing high-quality clean room equipment for advanced technical applications. Today, their wafer fabrication equipment and wet bench stations are used in a variety of applications from commercial to academic.

Achieving optimum results with Modutek’s Wet Processing Stations.

Modutek’s wet processing stations provide high quality and optimum results for your manufacturing process. Available in fully-automatic, semi-automatic, and manual benches. All bring unique advantages for your process requirements.

Wet Bench Manual Stations: Offered in a cost effective package, manual stations will support acid and solvent applications. This is offered with various options including a host of safety features without the need for advanced robotics.

Wet Bench Semi-Automatic Stations: Ideal for professional, academic and business applications, Modutek’s Semi-Automatic stations provide a large variety of customizations while remaining competitively priced. Our stations are ideal at continually producing uniform steps for technical work.

Wet Bench Fully-Automatic Stations: Packaged with in-house software, fully automatic robotics and top-of-the line features, Modutek’s fully-automatic stations are the most advanced option for optimal etch rates.

Built exclusively for your needs

Modutek’s wet benches can be customized to handle a host of solvents and applications. In addition to handling all solvent applications, wet benches can be adapted to the following processes:

  • KOH Etching
  • Ozone Etching
  • Ozone Cleaning
  • SC1 & SC2 featuring Megasonic Cleaning
  • Precision Part Cleaning
  • BOE (Buffered Oxide Etching)
  • SPM Cleaning
  • Plating
  • Quartz cleaning
  • Hot phosphoric (Nitride Etching)

Customized with state-of-the-art features

Modutek’s units are use in leading medical, solar, and academic labs. Their popularity is founded from their units’ ability to produce uniform results while exceeding current safety requirements. Additional features may be added to assist in achieving optimal results including:

  • FM4910 (PVC-C) material of construction
  • Rear access design
  • Third party certification for NFPA 70 & 70
  • Semi standard, CE mark and NEC certification available
  • Seismic zone 4 structural certification
  • Fan Filter Units (HEPA)
  • Lift station designed into bench
  • Dedicated drains to carboy with DOT containment
  • Overhead deck lighting
  • Light tower (3-color)
  • Counter balance safety shields

No matter your need or application Modutek’s experienced engineers and technicians will customize, build and test your unit to meet your requirements to provide optimal results. Modutek provides world-class service, set-up and customer support. Their Wet Benches and Wet Process equipment  provide high reliable results for precision processes. Contact them by calling 866-803-1533 or by email from the site.

What Modutek’s Dry to Dry Etching Process Equipment Provides

What Modutek’s Dry to Dry Etching Process Equipment ProvidesDry to Dry base / acid wet process from Modutek Corporation is fully automated equipment which is available in many different configurations to serve your requirements for wet process. Modutek’s engineering team put a lot of effort into designing the most effective equipment to support a dry to dry etching process  for your application. All the process sizes are handled from wafer carriers which are standard silicon wafer, glass substrates to glass solar panels of 30” X 60”.

All cleaning, wet process or etching components are designed and built in-house and provides you complete turnkey support. Station of dry to dry utilizes the MVD (Modutek Vapor Dryer) Series IPA Vapor Dryer. This allows you to proceed to the step in processing without using a separate tool in drying. Therefore it eliminates the need of transfer time, and this is a very effective way of improving both throughput and yield. The advanced software will increase your yield, improve your throughput and etch rate. The entire robotic system is completely designed, assembled and quality tested at San Jose, CA with the professionals from Modutek Corporation. All quality procedures use DI water for testing.

This wet process equipment has several features which are useful in your day to day applications. The features give it several advantages that will offer various benefits to you.

 Standard features:

  • Has a IPA Vapor Dryer on board (MDV Series)
  • White polypropylene construction
  • Emergency Power Off (EPO) is equipped with all safety locks
  • Available in multiple sizes and lengths to cater to your specific needs
  • Stations are all wired according to NFPA 70 and 79
  • Every wet process tank has 1” lip exhaust
  • PLC has  touch screen/ graphic user interface (GUI)
  • Servo motor motors has encoder feed back
  • One year warranty (all parts)
  • Leg levelers and casters
  • DI water manifold continuously flow
  • Hand spray for DI water and Teflon N2 gun
  • PVC safety shields
  • Photohelic interlocked to EPO
  • 2-copies of manual paper and a complete paperless set

Benefits include:

  • On board drying tool included
  • Long period of continuous operation (over 35 years)
  • All designing, assembly and testing is done at a single location
  • Software Design includes SolidWorks Simulation Professional and SolidWorks Flow Simulation
  • No outsourcing for either software or robotic design

Applications:

  • Diffusion Clean
  • Ozone Etching
  • Ozone Cleaning
  • KOH Etching
  • Buffered Oxide Etching (BOE)
  • Silicon Nitride Etch
  • SPM Clean
  • SC1 and SC2 containing Megasonic Energy

Optional Ozone Feature (Dry Zone)

The DryZone is a patented revolutionary new solvent gradient dryer. It exceeds the most vigorous total organic carbon (TOC) or volatile organic carbon (VOC) environmental concerns.

Silicon substrates are first rinsed in deionized water to remove any water inorganic impurities. After rinsing, the substrates enter a solvent chamber to develop a boundary layer, which will remove organic impurities. The substrates are then processed through an ozone chamber, either with or without ultraviolet light exposure, to convert all traces of organic materials into carbon dioxide gas. The substrate surfaces are then free from moisture, trace organics, and other particles. The substrate surfaces are stable hydrophilic surfaces. For silicon wafers, the surface is Si-O terminated. If hydrophobic surfaces are needed, a short 10 second post ozone conversion step renders silicon wafers Si-H terminated.

The dryer has no detectable VOC’s in the exhaust, and supports green chemistry initiatives, unlike isopropyl alcohol consuming dryers. Since the dryer uses reactive chemistries, it is more than just particle neutral, it is particle reducing!

Summary

The features, benefits, and applications discussed above say it all. Modutek’s engineering team designs the most effective etching or cleaning equipment needed for your application. If you have any questions or want to get a quote call us at 866-803-1533.

Using Modutek’s Teflon Tanks with KOH and TMAH Etching Processes

Using Modutek's Teflon Tanks wModutek’s TFa and TI series PFA Teflon Tanks, along with our other wet bench equipment, fully support KOH etching (Potassium Hydroxide) and TMAH etching (Tetramethylammonium hydroxide)processes.  Our Teflon Tanks are designed together with other wet bench equipment to decrease impurities and unwanted byproducts due to advanced welding techniques with PFA sheet material. Continual adjustments to the Si etching process are not necessary after the initial process has been established.  We construct all our Teflon Tanks and related equipment per individual customer specifications, and we routinely design products that are compatible with a customer’s existing wet bench equipment.

Modutek’s Teflon Tanks have an operating temperature range from 30 – 100º C, with a process temperature control of ± 0.5º C and a heat-up rate from 2-3º C per minute (depending on the size of system).  Our modular design allows for new installation or upgrades into any wet etching station configuration.

Teflon® tank configurations that support KOH and TMAH Etching:

  1. Temperature Controlled Re-circulating Baths (TFa Series)
  2. Temperature Controlled Static Baths (TI Series)

Teflon Tank design features:

  • Manual cover with overlapping seal
  • Minimizes water lost
  • No concentration deficiency over long etch time

Heat source options include: 

  1. Teflon® inline heating
  2. Immersion heating in overflow weir for TFa Series and main tank for TI Series

Static KOH etching bath with condensing coilsCustom Teflon® Tanks and Additional Options:

  • Custom size Teflon® tanks can also be built to match any size (no limitations)
  • Bottom drain features
  • Magnetic stirrer for agitation (TI and TT series)
  • Water condensing refluxor system available on all baths
  • Auto lid feature
  • DI water or IPA spiking system available

Benefits of Teflon Tanks:

  • Modular design
  • Two available heat sources
  • All Teflon® fluid path
  • Process temperature control of ± 0.5º C
  • Process etch uniformity wafer to wafer <2%
  • In house heater maintenance and repair
  • 360 degree overflow filtration
  • Uniform heating throughout the bath

KOH etching tank with condensing coils and semi auto robotModutek provides world-class service, installation and support for all our Teflon Tanks and related wet bench equipment. We provide quality products and services that focus on reliability, precision, throughput, usability and up-time. For more information contact us by calling 866-803-1533 or by email from our site.

Modutek’s Temperature Control Circulator Provides Reliability for Etching Applications

Modutek’s Temperature Control Circulator Provides Reliability for Etching Applications

Modutek’s RCe Series line of sub-ambient Temperature Control Circulator is an excellent choice for your Buffered Oxide Etch (BOE) and HF application. Temperature control varying by only 0.2ºC is the result of interfacing our temperature control circulator with your silicon wet etching bath or other etch bath (whether you purchase a new one or use your existing equipment). Its design is compact and measures 20.5” x 25.0” x 15.5”, allowing it to fit easily behind or under a wet processing station.

Replacing a non-compliant R22 Freon compressor unit with our 134A Freon compressor will be an advantage, as it will assure that your unit meets current codes. Compressor size, heater size, and fluid parts options will allow you to select a temperature control circulator that will meet your requirements.

The electrical box with on board logic control will monitor temperatures of processes, heaters, and coolers. It will monitor reservoir levels and wi10px;ll sound an alarm for low flow. It will also alert you if the temperature is over what it should be for those processes that require a specific or constant temperature.

Circulator units all come with a 1500 watt stainless steel heater. 2500 watt and 3500 watt upgrades are available, as well, should they be required. Our line includes an upgrade to Deionized (DI) water all stainless steel fluid path, which is unique to our circulators. The water requirement for our RCe-01 standard series is the industry standard, reverse osmosis or city water.

While the ¼ hp compress is standard for our temperature control circulator units, alternate options available include ½ hp, ¾ hp, and 1 hp. Our team of engineers will work closely with your engineers to ensure you have the right system for your application. We can also make some modifications, if they are needed, all in-house rather than outsourcing them.

Our temperature control circulators are environmentally friendly and CE compliant. They include independent circuit breaker protection. An external status display makes it easy to see what is happening. Maintenance on our units is reasonably easy.

Please keep in mind the Modutek’s RCe Series temperature control circulator does have specific facility requirements. Main power requirement of 120 VAC, 50/60HZ, 20A rating for the standard RCe025-1500. The large compress and heater line of the RCe series will have similar requirements with 208VAC, 4-wire Circuit rating. A ½” FNPT inlet/outlet will be needed for circulating fluid.

Precise temperature control is assured when you choose Modutek for your silicon wet etching process or when you choose to replace an existing chiller that is non-compliant. Modutek’s temperature control circulator was designed to be the most advanced chiller/heater unit available. It is reliable as well as safe. Consider using Modutek for precise temperature control in your etching process or replacing your existing non-compliant chiller. Call us at 866-803-1533 or send an email to [email protected] if you would like more information or a quote.