Author Topic: Wafers handling robotics arms  (Read 1427 times)

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Offline Ana_DigTopic starter

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Wafers handling robotics arms
« on: September 14, 2014, 01:38:16 AM »
Hi to all the forum members, my questions for this tread are correlated to the robotics arms for wafers like the robotics arms that are in this website:
www.kensingtonlabs.com
1. why is so important to build very very accuracy robotics arms, Wafer Handling Systems , in the machines of semiconductors industry that arrive to 1 micro meter accuracy? in other words why the semiconductors industries invest a lot of money in research and development of very very accuracy robotics arms? and how it will make the chips for the CPU of the computers or smartphones better?
2. If the wafer that the robotics arm move was have 300 millimeters diameter and now the wafer diameter enlarge to 450 millimeters so the wafer became to be heavier and bigger so what need to change in the robotics arm for wafers with 300 millimeters diameters that it will continue to be very very accuracy also for wafers with 450 millimeters diameter?

I think, but I am not sure, maybe the answer can be correlated also to very very accuracy machines productions or Hard Disk Drivers that are also very very accuracy.
I also will be happy to receive from the forum members links to article websites or relevant books like from google books or relevant lectures like from youtube education that are correlated to these questions, thank you.

Offline Billy

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Re: Wafers handling robotics arms
« Reply #1 on: September 15, 2014, 05:31:05 PM »
Why are you asking?
If this is a school assignment you should put that up front.
That said, I work at a semiconductor manufacturing equipment supplier that uses these robots.
Why are you asking?

Offline Ana_DigTopic starter

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Re: Wafers handling robotics arms
« Reply #2 on: September 16, 2014, 02:24:03 PM »
If you will know about one university in the entire world that teach one course that teach about what I ask in this tread so I will glad to know about that, I try to find but I didn't succeed.
my questions are correlated to robotics in semiconductor manufacturing industry.

Offline Billy

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Re: Wafers handling robotics arms
« Reply #3 on: September 16, 2014, 04:25:34 PM »
You still haven't said why you're asking, but I'll give you my thoughts.

1 - They may claim 1um accuracy (I didn't see that claim on the link you provided) but I don't buy it for a minute. The robots drift over time and vibration of the end-effector can be a serious issue. I could buy 100um repeatability in a production environment. You get better results if you run them very slowly or pause before picking up or setting down to allow for vibration to die out.

2 - The wafer processing machines have either the ability to precisely position the wafers or to precisely detect the wafer position so that operations can be performed with single digit nanometer (nm) precision. The robots only have to get the wafer close to where they are supposed to be. The processing machines take over after that.

3 - Even if the robots had um level repeatability, the machine operators still have to teach the robots and in my experience, getting the wafers close is all that is possible. (Disclaimer: I have never taught a robot myself. Only dealt with customers that are angry about wafer handling issues)

4 - Wafer safety - the robots have to be accurate enough to get wafers from the carriers (FOUPs) and put them back without banging them into things. Any inadvertent contact will generate particles that will contaminate the wafer. So if the wafer brushes up against the side of the FOUP on it's way in or way out, it will get microscopic plastic or silicon particles on the surface that will damage the yield. When setting the wafer down or picking it up, any sliding motion on the support surface (FOUP or robot) will generate particles as well or cause scratches.

5 - While I am chronically unimpressed with the mechanical performance of these robots, I am impressed by the level of cleanliness they achieve. Particles released into the air are killers for wafers so these robots have to have extremely low level of particles that are released in the same air space as the wafer. The cleanest hospital operating room in the world would be disastrous for a wafer. Simply exposing it to the atmosphere in the room would render it worthless. Something as large as a single bacteria would be considered a huge particle if found on a wafer.  So the robots kind of suck, but they are clean.

Additional disclaimer: I have no experience with the company in the link in the OP. My comments are based on personal opinion only and do not represent the opinions of anyone or anything else. 

 


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