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Flexible Automation and Integrated Manufacturing 1998

ISBN Druckformat: 978-1-56700-118-1



The station controller (SC) is a component in the fab automation system that provides the operator interface to both the fab equipment and the factory host systems. Initially, the main function of the SC was to eliminate misprocessing caused by wrong selection of recipes. However, the role of the SC has evolved over the last few years. In this paper, we emphasize the role of the SC in reducing the Technology Development (TD) cycle time.
In TD, the SC capabilities help in improving three areas of the technology process by order of priority: Die yield, line yield and output. First, die yield is achieved through advanced data analysis as in the case of registration equipment. Second, data collection from metrology equipment provides data integrity. Moreover, correct processing is controlled through proper recipe selection, pre-flight checking, recipe management and excursion protection. Third, cascading, queuing, and batching lead to more efficient machine utilization and therefore increased output.
The SC has also become an integral part of the fab process evaluation and improvement. One common user interface (UI) on all the SCs makes the different machine brands and interfaces transparent to the technicians. The SC hides the complexities of the WEP management system, and provides a means for remote transactions. The SC is often the tool in evaluating the capabilities of a chosen machine for the desired technology; data will be presented to show the increasing fab equipment coverage with station controllers as the engineering customers request station controllers on more equipments at equipment selection time.
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