KLA Unveils the PWG5 Wafer Geometry System and the Surfscan SP7XP Wafer Defect Inspection System

KLA Corporation develops industry-leading equipment and services that enable innovation throughout the electronics industry. They provide advanced process control and process-enabling solutions for manufacturing wafers and reticles, integrated circuits, packaging, printed circuit boards, and flat panel displays.

FREMONT, CA: KLA Corporation announced two new products: the PWG5 wafer geometry system and the Surfscan SP7XP wafer defect inspection system. The new systems are designed to address exceedingly difficult issues in the manufacture of leading-edge memory and logic integrated circuits.

"The complex multilayer construction of 3D NAND has moved wafer geometry measurements to the forefront," said Jijen Vazhaeparambil, general manager of the Surfscan and ADE division at KLA. "Our new patterned wafer geometry system, the PWG5, has the sensitivity to measure any deviations from planarity on the front side and back side of the wafer simultaneously. Its first-of-a-kind inline speed and exceptional resolution support not only 3D NAND, but also advanced DRAM and logic applications. Coupled with KLA's 5D Analyzer® data analytics system, the PWG5 helps our customers drive decisions, such as wafer re-work, process tool re-calibration, or alerting the lithography system so that best possible patterning corrections can be applied. The PWG5 system plays a critical role in process control, helping grow advanced memory and logic yield, performance and fab profitability."

On the leading-edge logic side of the semiconductor industry, high volume manufacturing of 5nm node devices is rising while the 3nm node is under development. EUV lithography has become nearly universal for the most critical layers within these nodes, and device manufacturing is further complicated by novel geometries like finFET or gate all around (GAA) transistor architectures. Patterning such small, complex features in a repeatable way, billions of times across a wafer, requires exquisite defectivity control, including the use of unpatterned wafer inspectors for the careful qualification of starting substrates and materials and frequent monitoring of processes and tools. The new Surfscan SP7XP unpatterned wafer defect inspection system features advancements to sensitivity and throughput. It introduces machine learning-based defect classification that together enables capture and identification of an even more comprehensive range of defect types on an even wider range of blanket films and substrate types than the benchmark Surfscan SP7.

Vazhaeparambil added, "The Surfscan design team focused not only on technical advances to support sensitivity and defect classification, but also on improving the cost of ownership." As a result, the Surfscan SP7XP represents a single-tool solution for unpatterned wafer inspection applications from R&D to high volume manufacturing of leading-edge design node substrates and devices. It is used at silicon wafer manufacturers, semiconductor equipment manufacturers developing defect-free processes, and semiconductor fabs to ensure incoming wafer, process, and tool quality. To maintain their high performance and productivity, Surfscan SP7XP and PWG5 systems are backed by KLA's global comprehensive service network.