Wet processing used in semiconductor manufacturing includes many complicated process steps which need to be taken into account when ordering new wet bench equipment. When selecting a supplier, experience and capabilities have to be evaluated. Physical requirements such as space and output volume are essential. The degree of automation required also plays a significant role. Finally, there are special requirements for specific processes that have to be evaluated. You need a competent manufacturer of wet bench equipment to help you get the wet process stations you need.
- Look for a Manufacturer with a Proven Track Record and In-House Capabilities
Manufacturers who can help you with your choice of a wet bench should have in-house expertise with a complete line of wet bench equipment, including their own software. An experienced manufacturer will be able to advise which stations satisfy your requirements and what options you should consider. In-house design and manufacturing capabilities allow the manufacturer to provide complete after-sales service and support.
- Make Sure Your Choices Don’t Impose Unwanted Physical Constraints
The chosen wet bench has to satisfy requirements for space, wafer size, and wafer throughput. If space is tight, a compact design or designs combining functions such as rinsing and drying can be considered. In any case, the station has to be able to process the proposed wafer sizes. Custom dimensions for equipment can be explored with a manufacturer that has customization capabilities.
Wafer throughput is often critical for the viability of the facility. It is influenced by the number of cassettes that can be processed in a bath and process duration. When projected throughput is borderline, an experienced manufacturer can often suggest special equipment, automation, or advanced process technology to reduce processing time and speed up production.
- The Degree of Automation Depends on How the Wet Bench Will Be Used
Wet benches for organizations such as research labs, small manufacturers, and high-volume manufacturing facilities have different automation needs. Labs often produce prototypes or small volumes for testing. A manual station may be the best solution for this kind of operation. Small manufacturers typically produce single units or small batches. A manual station could satisfy their needs, but a semi-automated station could allow them to run consistent batches while saving on the full-automation cost of robotics. High-volume operations will usually benefit from fully automated stations because they improve efficiency, reduce product defects and deliver excellent consistency over long runs.
- The Wet Bench Equipment Needs to Support the Wafer Manufacturing Process
Depending on the chemistry to be used, the selected wet bench equipment has to support the process. Wet process silicon wafer fabrication can use different chemical processes to clean, etch, develop and strip the wafers. Special equipment and accessories are used for various applications.
- Acid process tanks are made from quartz or Teflon, while solvent processes require stainless steel tanks. Tanks are made with high-purity materials and are designed to minimize particle contamination.
- Quartz tanks are used for cleaning, etching, and stripping. They can support high-temperature applications.
- Teflon tanks are used for etching applications. They can be ambient temperature tanks or heated with re-circulation.
- Silicon nitride wet etching requires special control features because adding de-ionized water to maintain the acid concentration can be dangerous.
- Quick dump rinsers speed up the process while reducing the use of de-ionized water and avoiding particle entrapment.
- Temperature-controlled circulating tanks are required for applications where the etch rate depends on the temperature. The baths are heated to achieve a higher etch rate and the temperature has to remain constant while the process is running.
Modutek Has the In-House Expertise and Capabilities to Help Choose a Wet Bench
As a leading semiconductor equipment manufacturer with over 40 years of experience, Modutek can recommend and provide the right equipment for your specific process requirements. Modutek has a complete line of wet processing equipment and can supply what you need and ensure it provides the performance you want. Contact Modutek for a free consultation and quote.