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8 May 2013

SPTS makes milestone 1000th DRIE process module shipment

Plasma etch, deposition and thermal processing equipment maker SPTS Technologies Ltd of Newport, Wales, UK (a Bridgepoint portfolio company) has reached a milestone in shipping its 1000th deep reactive ion etch (DRIE) module.

Fundamental to DRIE is the switched Bosch process patented by Robert Bosch in 1994. SPTS was the original Bosch process licensee, shipping its first commercial system in 1995. Since then, DRIE process capability has improved to the point where etch rates in production exceed 30μm/min, aspect ratios can exceed 90:1 and device features of <50nm are achievable.  Recently, DRIE is also being applied to through-silicon via (TSV) technology for 3D integration.

“This 1000th shipment is a proud moment for everyone at SPTS,” said Dr. Dave Thomas, marketing director for Etch Products at SPTS. “MEMS feature in every automobile, smartphone, tablet and gaming console on sale today. Our lives are hugely enriched by these microscopic sensors, and in the near future our healthcare will become reliant on them. For nearly 20 years, our engineers have contributed to this widespread adoption by producing more reliable, cost effective DRIE systems with the precision and control that is required for ever more sensitive and functional devices. We continue to develop our DRIE technology for future generations of MEMS and related chip-sets.”



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