Skip to Main Content
New advances in semiconductor manufacturing are demanding higher performance levels for process equipment. Gas delivery components are critical in several semiconductor fabrication processes. Requirements for minimum downtime and low cost of ownership demand increased reliability and performance. Extended lifetime, lower cost of operation including repair and calibration, and higher performance levels are continuously demanded by tool manufacturers and end users. In addition, integration of gas components and contamination control issues add to the complexity of the new generation gas delivery systems currently under development. These developments further demand higher levels of reliability for the subsystem components. New trends in quality and reliability are forcing manufacturers to comply with stringent requirements similar to those of the aerospace industry. This paper discusses test methods and experiment to improve gas delivery components performance and reliability. Examples of gas delivery components are reviewed. Individual component reliability and the effect on the total reliability of the system are described. A test method for Mass Flow Controllers (MFC) reliability is described as an example. This method simulates actual MFC usage in a process tool over an extended period of time. Test setup, test parameters and data collection are discussed in detail. It is shown how Mean Time between Failure (MTBF) or other statistical measures may be utilized to improve system reliability.