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Content archived on 2024-04-19

Manufacturing Science and Technology for Front-End and Back-End IC Production

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In order to improve efficiency in complementary metal oxide semiconductor (CMOS) production 8 European companies have worked together closely optimizing production of CMOS integrated circuits on live manufacturing sites. Technology associated with 0.7 micrcon CMOS accounts for an increasing share of the market for integrated circuits (IC). It has been forecast that the world market for semiconductors will increase from $86bn in 1993 to an estimated $300bn by 2000, of which 0.7 micron technology will increase from 25% to 60%. Hence, competitiveness in this area of CMOS technology is essential to the future prosperity of the Euroepan IC industry. Under the Manufacturing Science and Technology (MST) for IC Production project 8 European manufacturers worked on common manufacturing and equipment issues connected with economizing 0.7 micron CMOS technology. The partners cooperated closely in exchanging detailed information on manufacturing and equipment performance experience, and by developing a common methodology and monitoring activities which enabled them to achieve and retain world-class productivity and quality levels. Activities included benchmarking methods against worldwide competition, meetings between IC producers and process equipment manufacturers, and workshops on key production issues such as clean rooms, cluster tools, low cost application specific integrated circuit (ASIC) testing, and in-process data collection and analysis. The consortium's collective engineering resources were applied to reduce individual company development costs and, most importantly, to gear production ready in time for market demand. Total savings to the European IC industry arising from the project are estimated at European currency unit (ECU) 192m, against a total contribution from the Community of ECU 32m, a 6-fold yield on investment.

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