Orbotech’s SPTS Technologies adds Rapier-300S to its Mosaic™ platform for plasma dicing of 300mm wafers on taped frames

Rapier-300S overcomes singulation challenges of ultra-small and ultra-thin devices in volume production.

SPTS Technologies, an Orbotech company and a supplier of advanced wafer-processing solutions for the global semiconductor and related industries, has introduced the Rapier-300S plasma etch module, the latest addition to its Mosaic™ plasma dicing platform.

The Rapier-300S singulates 300mm wafers on 400mm taped frames, and offers significant throughput and yield benefits for manufacturers of ultra-small and ultra-thin devices. Using SPTS’s industry leading deep reactive ion etch (DRIE) technology, the Rapier-300S offers the tight process control and fast etch rates necessary to achieve the high yields and throughput required for this cost sensitive step.

As devices continue to shrink, singulation by plasma etching offers considerable benefits for die quality and strength as compared to traditional dicing solutions,” stated Kevin Crofton, President of SPTS Technologies and Corporate Vice President at Orbotech. “With wafer thicknesses trending below 50µm, conventional dicing methods are reaching their limits. Ultra-small and ultra-thin devices like RFID chips or fragile devices like MEMS are more susceptible to damage from the vibration and chipping caused by mechanical saws, or from the heat caused by lasers. Plasma dicing is a purely non-contact chemical process, thus offering a far less damaging method of singulating devices when they are in their most valuable state. With customers already qualifying devices on 300mm, and in volume production on 150mm and 200mm, our plasma dicing solutions are well positioned to be the benchmark technology for fabs seeking to increase throughputs and yields for small or thinned fragile die.”

The Rapier-300S is a silicon DRIE module, designed specifically for dicing of 300mm wafers mounted on 400mm frames. It builds on SPTS’s experience in plasma singulation of 150mm, 200mm and 300mm wafers. Unique aspects of SPTS’s plasma dicing technology include the use of SPTS’s patented Claritas™ end-point detection system, which provides the earliest possible detection of the lane clearing, allowing the use of patented “bias pulsing” techniques to prevent lateral damage of the die sidewall.

The Rapier-300S can etch die of any shape with dicing lanes below 10µm and accommodates wafer thicknesses up to and including full wafer thickness. For the smallest die, for example RFID devices (at~0.04mm2), the adoption of narrow dicing lanes could provide up to 80% more die per wafer, at much higher throughputs since all dicing lanes are etched in parallel. Plasma dicing also gives device designers much greater flexibility with regards to fundamental die position/shape/size, removing guard rings and positioning of die/test groups, to make better use of the wafer area.