Atomic layer deposition (ALD) thin-film technology firm Picosun Oy of Espoo, Finland has reported repeat sales of automated P-300BV vacuum batch production systems to major Asian discrete device manufacturers.
Even if the 300mm wafer size is the existing state-of-the-art in many key semiconductor applications, and efforts have been made to increase this size to 450mm, the 200mm market shows no signs of tailing off, says Picosun. A major factor supporting this steadfast longevity is the increasing usage of substrate materials such as gallium nitride (GaN), silicon carbide (SiC) and sapphire, where the wafer size is limited to 200mm or smaller, for applications including LED lighting, car and transport automation, power conversion, wireless communication and remote sensing. A prime example of the last two is the rapidly spreading Internet of Things (IoT), with billions of sensors forming its core. All of these applications ensure that the demand for 200mm semiconductor production equipment remains consistently high and is even increasing.
“As so many central semiconductor applications and emerging technologies of today utilize 200mm substrates, there has been even a shortage of suitable manufacturing equipment,” notes managing director Juhana Kostamo.
Picosun’s P-300BV ALD system is designed for fast batch processing of wafers up to 200mm size. Suitable for applications including micro-electro-mechanical system (MEMS) and compound semiconductor production, it is equipped with a single or dual vacuum load-lock system for semi-automatic loading and unloading of substrates under constant vacuum, enabling deposition of nitrides and other sensitive materials. Wafer carriers of metal and quartz are available, depending on application. Full integration to factory automation is possible via the SECS/GEM protocol.