World-leading chipmaker, Intel, calls the process "from sand to circuits." Slip into any chip-making clean room (don a bunny suit first) to witness the elaborate steps that "print" millions of transistors, resistors, diodes, capacitors and more onto small rectangles of silicon on large wafers.
As silicon wafers proceed step after step, a tiny mistake – motes of dust, an impurity in the vapor deposition chemistry, even an equipment misalignment as small as a millionth of an inch – can turn thousands of dollars of chips into waste.
Today's smartphones provide an ideal example. A typical high-end smartphone contains perhaps a dozen chips – or integrated circuits – totaling an astounding 2+ billion transistors. Within a decade, the semiconductor industry predicts the ability to place as many transistors on a chip as the 100+ billion neurons in our brain. It's vital that MES employs digital factory information to achieve defect-free production.
The required precision means real time digital data at every turn, data that enables instant decisions. Imagine an MES/FIS software system capable of using the data to manage the processes, a system that meets the challenges of chip making. At SolSemUSA, we've done more than imagine it. We've created and named it: FactoryPRO (FP).
Within the chip industry, new product innovation often originates with small firms whose founders have brilliant design ideas. These design-centered companies create intellectual property. They do not have manufacturing facilities due to the enormous cost-of-entry. Since chip making means wafer fabrication, these firms are "fabless." As their designs come to life in the form of tooling (mask sets), fabless chip companies contract with wafer foundries to manufacture the chips.
For fabless firms, FactoryPRO installed in the foundry provides the real time digital conversation and dashboard that monitors production, manages key aspects and sounds alerts. FP also enables fulfillment of standards such as ISO. FP is very inexpensive compared with custom-developed IT management software.
And FactoryPRO may be used to manage key aspects of the design and manufacturing process, including
Both inside the wafer foundry and inside the fabless design shop, FP monitors, reports and controls vital processes. Learn more here