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Summary form only given. The semiconductor industry has increased the size of wafers from 150 mm to 450 mm to improve productivity. This change has necessitated the need for innovations in the sizes of FABs, equipments, and transportation systems. the increase in the size of FABs, in particular, has resulted in many changes in transportation systems. The increase in wafer sizes has led to an increase in front opening unified pod (FOUP) weight, reducing manual handling by operators and bringing to light the importance of automated material handling systems (AMHS). The transportation systems of FABs can be largely divided into intra-bay and inter-bay. The initial 150 mm FABs relied only on overhead shuttles (OHS) for automatic inter-bay transportation, while the 200 mm FABs added automatic guided vehicles (AGV) for automatic intra-bay transportation. The 300 mm FABs introduced a segregated approach where high-speed overhead hoist transports (OHT) are used for intra bay transportation and OHSpsilas are used for inter-bay transportation. The inefficiency of operating intra-bay and inter-bay transportation in a segregated manner in 300 mm FABs has recently been raised, so a unified approach where OHTpsilas are used for both intra- and inter-bay transportation has been developed. Also, side track buffers (STB) and under track buffer (UTB) have been installed on OHT rails to minimize the footprint of stockers, resulting in minimal equipment rundown and reduced turn-around time (TAT) of semiconductor production. The standard for 450 mm fabs is currently being heavily discussed within the International Sematech Manufacturing Initiative (ISMI).
Date of Conference: 13-16 July 2008