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30 September 2013

Plasma-Therm introduces new MDS systems

Plasma process equipment maker Plasma-Therm LLC of St Petersburg, FL, USA has introduced new MicroDieSingulator (MDS) systems. The systems deliver plasma-based singulation of semiconductor dies from 4-inch, 6-inch, and 8-inch wafers mounted on industry-standard tape frames. The firm introduced the systems at this week’s IMAPS event, the 46th International Symposium on Microelectronics.

By utilizing energized plasma, rather than mechanical saws or lasers to cut between
dies, the MDS system allows singulation (“dicing”) of individual dies with separation lines
(”streets”) of 20 microns or less, which is far smaller than most existing equipment can achieve, says the firm.

In addition to allowing maximum utilization of valuable silicon-wafer real estate by
reducing street size, Plasma-Therm’s exclusive MicroDieSingulator technology separates dies
without causing lateral damage from stress-induced cracking, overheating, or re-deposition of
ablated material. Scanning-electron microscope images show that Plasma-Therm’s MDS
process produces separated dies with smooth, vertical sidewalls.

MDS systems allow integrated device manufacturers to produce more wafers per hour,
as well as more individual dies per wafer, says the firm. The MDS plasma process also results in dies that are less likely to be chipped during separation and are less prone to fracture during packaging.

Plasma-Therm’s executive vice president of Marketing, Ed Ostan, said, “With its plasmabased
process, MDS outperforms mechanical saws and laser cutting tools. In addition, IC designers gain the freedom to utilize thinner wafers, design smaller streets, and even create non-rectangular streets and dies.”

Thierry Lazerand, Plasma-Therm’s director of Technical Marketing, added, “MDS-100
systems are fully equipped for high-volume production, with automated, tape-frame cassette
transfer stations. By providing unmatched cut speed — equivalent to 1,500mm per second on
50-micron-thick wafers — and eliminating the damage inherent in laser and saw-based die
separation, MDS-100 is changing the game for semiconductor manufacturing.”

MDS technology is backed by Plasma-Therm’s customer care and technical support services.

Tags: Plasma-Therm

Visit: www.plasmatherm.com

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