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Automated wafer transport in the wafer Fab

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1 Author(s)
Kaempf, Ulrich ; Hewlett-Packard Co., Corvallis, OR, USA

Through simulations with models, HP's Inkjet Supplies Business Unit has determined that intrabay material transport with automated delivery of wafers directly to process tools substantially increases the throughput of our semiconductor manufacturing facility (Fab). To fully utilize limited Fab space, an architecture using overhead track and vehicles has been selected. HP cooperated with a Supplier of automated material handling systems (AMHS) to develop this “zero footprint” solution. The experiences learned from a first-generation prototype system have been incorporated into a second generation prototype, which is currently being characterized at HP's Corvallis site. Due to the long AMHS development cycle, the new Corvallis Fab started its operation with manual material transport, using SMIF pods as carrying containers. All process tools have been equipped with SMIF (Standard Mechanical Interface) load ports. Applying AEC (Automated Equipment Control) station controllers manage lot identification, WIP tracking and recipe selection. The SMIF industry standard for load port design, and AEC have proven to be valuable enablers to achieve AMHS with automated pod delivery and pick-up to and from process tools

Published in:

Advanced Semiconductor Manufacturing Conference and Workshop, 1997. IEEE/SEMI

Date of Conference:

10-12 Sep 1997