IMPROVE – Improvement of IC manufacturing efficiency
The objective of the project is to improve European semiconductor fabrication plants efficiency by providing methods and tools to better control the process variability, reduce the cycle time and enhance the effectiveness of the production equipment.
This will be achieved by development of new approaches in 3 major areas:
- Virtual Metrology
- virtually measure all processed wafers and to reduce sampling at standard metrology steps, thus improving cycle time.
- Predictive Equipment Behavior
- improve the process tools reliability whilst optimizing the maintenance frequency and increasing the equipment uptime.
- Dynamic Risk Assessment and Dynamic Control Plan
- dynamically adapt the control plan, decreasing the number and frequency of control in the stable areas while increasing when needed in a sensitive zone.
The project started in January 2009 and will end in December 2011. Critical Manufacturing has the responsibility for the prototyping and specific modules for each of the major areas described before as well as their integration in a common fab-wide framework to be deployed at each of the IC manufacturers part of the consortium.