Ultratech Introduces Superfast 4G Low-cost In-line Inspection System for Patterned Wafers

Ultratech Introduces Superfast 4G Low-cost In-line Inspection System for Patterned Wafers

Ultratech, Inc., a leading supplier of lithography, laser-processing and inspection systems used to manufacture semiconductor devices and high-brightness LEDs (HB-LEDs), today introduced the Superfast 4G high-volume, in-line, 3D topography inspection system. Ultratech’s new 4G system builds on the field-tested capability of the Superfast 3G, providing the industry’s highest-productivity and lowest-cost solution compared to competing systems. The Superfast 4G system’s patented coherent gradient sensing (CGS) technology provides a high degree of flexibility that enables Ultratech customers to use a single type of wafer inspection tool to measure the front side of patterned wafers across the entire fab line at the lowest cost. Ultratech plans to begin shipping the Superfast 4G systems in the first quarter of 2015.

The Superfast 4G leads the industry:

  • Direct, front-side 3D topography measurement for patterned wafers
  • Highest throughput for in-line, patterned wafer system—125 wph
  • Lowest cost-of-ownership─3x to 5x lower compared to competing systems
  • Flexibility to measure front side of patterned wafers anywhere in the production line, (front-, middle- and back-end-of-line)
  • Open-architecture inspection platform can improve lithography performance
  • Small wafer-shaped inspection footprint significantly reduces customer production costs compared to competing systems

Ultratech Vice President, Marketing Inspection System & Technology Transfer, Shrinivas Shetty explained, “By working with leading-edge memory and logic customers using Ultratech’s 3G systems, we were able to successfully implement the industry’s requirements for 3D topography with in-line inspection tools. Ultratech invested heavily in the algorithm and factory automation capabilities, expanded manufacturing capacity in Singapore and developed regional senior applications managers to help ensure a smooth ramp to volume production. Ultratech also made significant improvements to the new Superfast 4G inspection system, resulting in increases of 2.5x in performance and 65% in throughput, as well as a 30% reduction in edge exclusion, compared to the 3G system. Moreover, the two inspection systems have identical process modules retaining all critical optical components ensuring a smooth transition from the 3G to the 4G system for high-volume production. The Superfast 4G is an example of Ultratech’s commitment to providing leading technology that cost-effectively addresses the critical needs of its global customers for high-volume manufacturing.”

Ultratech’s Superfast 4G Inspection System

Based on patented coherent gradient sensing (CGS) technology, Ultratech’s Superfast 4G inspection system for patterned wafers provides the industry’s highest throughput  (125 wph), with the lowest cost-of-ownership (3x to 5x lower) compared to competing systems. The direct, front-side 3D topography measurement capability is well suited for patterned wafer applications such as feed-forward overlay distortion control, 3D topography measurement for focus control, and high-stress process control (bow, warpage, breakage). The Ultratech Superfast 4G inspection system provides leading technology to address the critical needs of its global customers in a cost-effective solution.

Safe Harbor

This release includes forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Forward-looking statements can generally be identified by words such as  “anticipates,” “expects,” “remains,” “thinks,” “intends,” “believes,” “estimates,” and similar expressions and include management’s current expectation of its longer term prospects for success. These forward-looking statements are based on our current expectations, estimates, assumptions and projections about our business and industry, and the markets and customers we serve, and they are subject to numerous risks and uncertainties that may cause these forward-looking statements to be inaccurate. Such risks and uncertainties include the timing and possible delays, deferrals and cancellations of orders by customers; quarterly revenue fluctuations; industry and sector cyclicality, instability and unpredictability; market demand for consumer devices utilizing semiconductors produced by our clients; our ability to manage costs; new product introductions, market acceptance of new products and enhanced versions of our existing products; reliability and technical acceptance of our products; our lengthy sales cycles, and the timing of system installations and acceptances; lengthy and costly development cycles for laser-processing and lithography technologies and applications; competition and consolidation in the markets we serve; improvements, including in cost and technical features, of competitors’ products; rapid technological change; pricing pressures and product discounts; our ability to collect receivables; customer and product concentration and lack of product revenue diversification; inventory obsolescence; general economic, financial market and political conditions and other factors outside of our control; domestic and international tax policies; cybersecurity threats in the United States and globally that could impact our industry, customers, and technologies; and other factors described in our SEC reports including our Annual Report on Form 10-K filed for the year ended December 31, 2013, and our Quarterly Report on Form 10-Q for the three months ended September 27, 2014. Due to these and other factors, the statements, historical results and percentage relationships set forth herein are not necessarily indicative of the results of operations for any future period. We undertake no obligation to revise or update any forward-looking statements to reflect any event or circumstance that may arise after the date of this release.

About Ultratech: Ultratech, Inc. (Nasdaq: UTEK) designs, builds and markets manufacturing systems for the global technology industry. Founded in 1979, Ultratech serves three core markets: front-end semiconductor, back-end semiconductor, and nanotechnology. The company is the leading supplier of lithography products for bump packaging of integrated circuits and high-brightness LEDs. Ultratech is also the market leader and pioneer of laser spike anneal technology for the production of advanced semiconductor devices. In addition, the company offers solutions leveraging its proprietary coherent gradient sensing (CGS) technology to the semiconductor wafer inspection market and provides atomic layer deposition (ALD) tools to leading research organizations, including academic and industrial institutions. Visit Ultratech online at: www.ultratech.com.