Associated With Semiconductor Wafer Handling Patents (Class 414/935)
  • Patent number: 10504764
    Abstract: A substrate production, manufacturing, and processing system includes storages with one or more separations that store substrates, loading stations that include robots, opener systems, and a software management system. The storage separations hold first containers that store carriers and the substrates in stacks. Each robot is able to access and move at least one of: the first container, a second container or carrier, and one of the substrates. The opener systems open the first containers such that the carriers and the substrates are able to be accessed by the robots in the loading station, and the software management system assigns at least one category to each stack of carriers and the substrates. The first containers store the substrates with a higher density than the second container or carrier, and the opener systems each include effectors that each hold an individual one of the substrates.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 16, 2017
    Date of Patent: December 10, 2019
    Assignee: MURATA MACHINERY, LTD.
    Inventors: Gerhard Dovids, Yves Fenner, John Fiddes, Christian Wohanka, Bernd Rahrbach
  • Patent number: 10475679
    Abstract: Presented herein is a device processing boat comprising a base and at least one unit retainer disposed in the base. The device further comprises a cover having at least one recess configured to accept and retain at least one unit. The at least one recess is aligned over, and configured to hold the at least one unit over, at least a portion of the at least one unit retainer. The cover is retained to the device processing boat by the at least one unit retainer. At least one pressure sensor having at least one sensel is disposed in the base. The sensel is configured to sense a clamping force applied by the cover to the at least one unit.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 9, 2018
    Date of Patent: November 12, 2019
    Assignee: Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company, Ltd.
    Inventors: Ai-Tee Ang, Hsiu-Jen Lin, Wei-Hung Lin, Ming-Da Cheng, Chung-Shi Liu
  • Patent number: 10312127
    Abstract: Embodiments of substrate transfer robot blades to engage and support a substrate during transfer are provided herein. In some embodiments, a substrate transfer robot may include a blade body having a blade support surface; and a plurality of compliant pads, each comprising a contact surface and an opposite bottom surface supported by the body and arranged to support a substrate when disposed on the substrate transfer robot blade.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 16, 2014
    Date of Patent: June 4, 2019
    Assignee: APPLIED MATERIALS, INC.
    Inventors: Steven V. Sansoni, Jeffrey Brodine, Glen Mori
  • Patent number: 9911633
    Abstract: Presented herein is a device processing boat comprising a base and at least one unit retainer disposed in the base. The device further comprises a cover having at least one recess configured to accept and retain at least one unit. The at least one recess is aligned over, and configured to hold the at least one unit over, at least a portion of the at least one unit retainer. The cover is retained to the device processing boat by the at least one unit retainer. At least one pressure sensor having at least one sensel is disposed in the base. The sensel is configured to sense a clamping force applied by the cover to the at least one unit.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 16, 2016
    Date of Patent: March 6, 2018
    Assignee: Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company, Ltd.
    Inventors: Ai-Tee Ang, Hsiu-Jen Lin, Wei-Hung Lin, Ming-Da Cheng, Chung-Shi Liu
  • Patent number: 9427818
    Abstract: Presented herein is a device comprising a device processing boat comprising a base at least one unit retainer disposed in the base. The device further comprises a cover having at least one recess configured to accept and retain at least one unit, the at least one recess aligned over, and configured to hold the at least one unit over, at least a portion of the at least one unit retainer. The cover is retained to the device processing boat by the at least one unit retainer. At least one pressure sensor having at least one sensel is disposed in the base and having the sensel configured to sense a clamping force applied by the cover to the at least one unit.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 20, 2014
    Date of Patent: August 30, 2016
    Assignee: Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company, Ltd.
    Inventors: Ai-Tee Ang, Hsiu-Jen Lin, Wei-Hung Lin, Ming-Da Cheng, Chung-Shi Liu
  • Patent number: 9349625
    Abstract: Provided is a substrate conveyance method where a segment which can simultaneously hold M pieces of substrates defined by an integer M of 2 or more is provided, and a substrate conveyance part can simultaneously convey N pieces of substrates defined by an integer N of 2 or more which is not a divisor of the integer M from the segment or toward the segment. The substrate conveyance part performs a substrate conveyance cycle repeatedly where when N pieces of variables ik defined by integers k of 1 to N are arbitrary integers of 0 or more and not more than (M/N) and satisfy a relationship of M=N×i1+ . . . +1×iN, a conveyance step where a substrate conveyance step of simultaneously conveying (N?k?1) pieces of substrates from the segment or toward the segment by the substrate conveyance part is performed ik times is performed with respect to the conveyance step where the number of times of the substrate conveyance steps is defined by each variable which is a natural number out of N pieces of variables ik.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 19, 2014
    Date of Patent: May 24, 2016
    Assignee: SCREEN Holdings Co., Ltd.
    Inventor: Yoshifumi Okada
  • Patent number: 9022714
    Abstract: A substrate processing system and substrate transferring method capable of transferring a substrate bi-directionally through the use of substrate transferring device provided between two rows of processing chambers arranged linearly, thereby improving the substrate-transferring efficiency, the substrate processing system includes a transfer chamber having at least one bi-directional substrate transferring device for bi-directionally transferring a substrate; and a plurality of processing chambers for applying a semiconductor-manufacturing process to the substrate, wherein the plurality of processing chambers are linearly arranged along two rows confronting each other, and the transfer chamber is interposed between the two rows of the processing chambers, wherein the bi-directional substrate transferring device have a moving unit inside the transfer chamber, and horizontally moved by a linear motor; and a bi-directional substrate transferring unit in the moving unit, the bi-directional substrate transferring u
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 12, 2010
    Date of Patent: May 5, 2015
    Assignee: Jusung Engineering Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Kyoo Hwan Lee, Duck Won Moon, Jae Wook Choi
  • Patent number: 9010384
    Abstract: A load part has a nozzle unit having outlets for generating outflow and/or inflow of gas used for replacing the atmosphere of a wafer storage container, in a direction approximately parallel to spaces between adjacent wafers being stored, are a driving unit for extending the nozzle unit to a door opening portion.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 2, 2012
    Date of Patent: April 21, 2015
    Assignee: Right Mfg. Co. Ltd.
    Inventors: Takehiko Yoshimura, Tatsuhiko Nagata, Masaru Seki, Yoshinori Cho
  • Patent number: 8992746
    Abstract: An apparatus for anodizing substrates immersed in an electrolyte solution. A substrate holder mounted in a storage tank includes a first support unit having first support elements for supporting, in a liquid-tight condition, only lower circumferential portions of the substrates, and a second support unit attachable to and detachable from the first support unit and having second support elements for supporting, in a liquid-tight condition, remaining circumferential portions of the substrates. A drive mechanism separates the first support unit and the second support unit when loading and unloading the substrates, and for connecting the first support unit and the second support unit after the substrates are placed in the substrate holder.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 2, 2011
    Date of Patent: March 31, 2015
    Assignees: Dainippon Screen Mfg. Co., Ltd., Solexel, Inc.
    Inventors: Yasuyoshi Miyaji, Noriyuki Hayashi, Takamitsu Inahara, Takao Yonehara, Karl-Josef Kramer, Subramanian Tamilmani
  • Patent number: 8978718
    Abstract: To generate a gas-curtain for a load-port-apparatus and to supply a purge-gas into a pod by a single gas source, provided is a gas purge device including: purge nozzles extending along an outer side of side edges of the opening portion; a curtain nozzle arranged above an upper edge of the opening portion; a gas supply pipe arranged in parallel to each purge nozzle, for supplying an inert gas to the purge nozzle and the curtain nozzle, the gas being supplied from the gas supply pipe to the purge nozzle in a direction orthogonal to an extending direction of the gas supply pipe; and a conductance adjusting unit arranged at an end portion of the gas supply pipe, for generating a pressure loss in a gas flow in a configuration in which the gas is supplied to the curtain nozzle at the end portion of the gas supply pipe.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 14, 2012
    Date of Patent: March 17, 2015
    Assignee: TDK Corporation
    Inventors: Jun Emoto, Tadamasa Iwamoto, Toshihiko Miyajima
  • Patent number: 8978670
    Abstract: Provided is a substrate processing apparatus wherein, even if a trouble occurs, it is bound to continue a process for the substrate without stopping the substrate processing apparatus entirely. The substrate processing apparatus according to the present disclosure includes first and second substrate conveying devices configured to convey wafers, and first and second processing blocks provided on the right and left sides of the substrate conveying device and having processing unit arrays each configured to perform the same process. Processing unit arrays on one side and processing unit arrays on the other side are respectively connected to a processing liquid supply system commonly provided with them. And, when any one of substrate conveying devices, processing liquid supply systems has a problem, the process for the wafer can be performed in the processing unit array to which the substrate conveying device and the processing liquid supply system under normal operation belong.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 4, 2010
    Date of Patent: March 17, 2015
    Assignee: Tokyo Electron Limited
    Inventors: Junya Minamida, Issei Ueda, Yasuhiro Chouno, Osamu Kuroda, Kazuyoshi Eshima, Masahiro Yoshida, Satoshi Morita
  • Patent number: 8979463
    Abstract: To prevent an overload from being imposed on a door drive mechanism when driving a door increased in weight due to upsizing so that reproducibility of a stop position of the door can be ensured, provided is a load port apparatus in which the door drive mechanism for driving the door in a direction perpendicular to an opening-portion forming plane is constituted by: a rotary cylinder capable of pivoting a cam follower from an angle of 0° to an angle of 180°; and a slider including a cam groove capable of housing the cam follower within a plane perpendicular to a rotational axis of the rotary cylinder, the cam groove extending in a vertical direction, and in which the door is supported by the slider.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 9, 2011
    Date of Patent: March 17, 2015
    Assignee: TDK Corporation
    Inventors: Hiroshi Igarashi, Toshihiko Miyajima
  • Patent number: 8965572
    Abstract: In recent years, frames have gotten larger in size and thinner, and warping of the frames has posed a problem. If a warp of a frame is large, there is a high possibility that fetching the frame may fail. If fetching the frame fails, that is, if the frame cannot be fetched, the lead time of mounting gets longer. Further, the frame that cannot be fetched has to be manually removed by an operator. Therefore, a man-hour increases. According to the present invention, before a loader feeder fetches a frame from a frame magazine, a loader lifter is moved in a Y direction. Thereafter, the loader feeder fetches the frame from the frame magazine.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 2, 2011
    Date of Patent: February 24, 2015
    Assignee: Hitachi High-Tech Instruments Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Tatsuyuki Ohkubo, Mitsuo Yoda
  • Patent number: 8958907
    Abstract: A robot arm apparatus includes an arm mechanism including a base member and a link pivotally connected to the base member for pivotal motion in a horizontal plane through a rotational shaft. The link holds a regular circular transport object at its distal end. The apparatus also includes an edge detector, provided on the base member, that detects two edges of the regular circular transport object as the link pivotally rotates with respect to the base member, a pivotal angle detector that detects a pivotal angle of the link with respect to the base member, and a center position calculator that calculates a center position of the regular circular transport object with respect to the link. The calculation is based on two pivotal angles detected by the pivotal angle detector when the edge detector detects the two edges of the regular circular transport object.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 21, 2012
    Date of Patent: February 17, 2015
    Assignee: Sinfonia Technology Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Toru Saeki, Yasumichi Mieno, Yuji Urabe, Toshio Kamigaki, Yoji Masui
  • Patent number: 8951809
    Abstract: A method of carrying out a transfer of one or more first components or of a first layer onto a second substrate including: a) application and maintaining, by electrostatic effect, of the one or more first components or of the first layer, on a first substrate, made of a ferroelectric material, electrically charged, b) placing in contact, direct or by molecular adhesion, and transfer of the components or the layer onto a second substrate, and c) dismantling of the first substrate, leaving at least one part of the components or the layer on the second substrate.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 3, 2009
    Date of Patent: February 10, 2015
    Assignee: Commissariat a l'Energie Atomique et aux Energies Alternatives
    Inventors: Jean-Sebastien Moulet, Lea Di Cioccio, Marion Migette
  • Patent number: 8951888
    Abstract: A method for fabricating a semiconductor device includes a first step of forming, on a first substrate, a first element region in which a plurality of elements are collectively arranged, a second step of relocating the plurality of elements formed on the first substrate to a holding member in the same arrangement as in the first element region to have the plurality of elements held on the holding member, a third step of rearranging the plurality of elements held on the holding member and having the plurality of elements held on an intermediate substrate, thereby forming a second element region having a shape different from a shape of the first element region on the intermediate substrate, and a fourth step of dispersing the plurality of elements held on the intermediate substrate and adhering the plurality of elements to a second substrate.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 23, 2011
    Date of Patent: February 10, 2015
    Assignee: Sharp Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventor: Katsuyuki Suga
  • Patent number: 8944738
    Abstract: Methods and systems are provided for a vacuum-based semiconductor handling system. The system may be a linear system with a four-link robotic SCARA arm for moving materials in the system. The system may include one or more vertically stacked load locks or vertically stacked process modules.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 29, 2011
    Date of Patent: February 3, 2015
    Assignee: Brooks Automation, Inc.
    Inventor: Peter van der Meulen
  • Patent number: 8920107
    Abstract: A substrate support apparatus which can support a substrate having a center hole, comprises a support portion which can support the substrate. The support portion includes a support groove with a cross-sectional shape in which a groove width gradually increases in a counter-gravitational direction, and a width of the support groove between two end portions is larger than a width of the support groove at the center thereof.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 11, 2011
    Date of Patent: December 30, 2014
    Assignee: Canon Anelva Corporation
    Inventors: Tadashi Ikeda, Gen Goshokubo, Hiroshi Sone
  • Patent number: 8915368
    Abstract: A liquid crystal display (LCD) glass substrate storage tray includes a frame. Each surface of the frame is configured with a plate, the frame and the plates enclose to form a closed box, and the plate on surface of the frame where an opening for the LCD glass substrate to be selected and placed is located forms a box door that is installable or removable from the frame.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 24, 2012
    Date of Patent: December 23, 2014
    Inventor: Rui Fang
  • Patent number: 8911193
    Abstract: A method and apparatus for processing substrates using a multi-chamber processing system, or cluster tool, is provided. In one embodiment of the invention, a robot assembly is provided. The robot assembly includes a first motion assembly movable in a first direction, and a second motion assembly, the second motion assembly being coupled to the first motion assembly and being movable relative to the first motion assembly in a second direction that is generally orthogonal to the first direction. The robot assembly further comprises an enclosure disposed in one of the first motion assembly or the second motion assembly, the enclosure containing at least a portion of a vertical actuator assembly, a support plate coupled to the enclosure, and a first transfer robot disposed on the support plate.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 28, 2011
    Date of Patent: December 16, 2014
    Assignee: Applied Materials, Inc.
    Inventors: Mike Rice, Jeffrey Hudgens, Charles Carlson, William Tyler Weaver, Robert Lowrance, Eric Englhardt, Dean C. Hruzek, Dave Silvetti, Michael Kuchar, Kirk Van Katwyk, Van Hoskins, Vinay Shah
  • Patent number: 8893753
    Abstract: The substrate storage pod includes a pod case for housing a substrate, and an opening, a lid member which closes and seals the opening, a buffer space which is defined in the lid member, an air-supply port for supplying a replacement gas into the buffer space; and multiple holes which are arranged so as to establish communication between the buffer space and an inner plate of the lid member in a state of being fit-inserted to the opening of the pod case, for sending out the replacement gas into the hollow inner space, the replacement gas having been supplied into the buffer space, the inner plate facing the hollow inner space of the pod case. With this, pressure variation of the replacement gas in supply pipes is blocked, and hence replacement-gas flow in a stable laminar state free from disturbance can be obtained.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 25, 2011
    Date of Patent: November 25, 2014
    Assignee: TDK Corporation
    Inventors: Tsutomu Okabe, Hiroshi Igarashi
  • Patent number: 8870516
    Abstract: A loadport has a port door and a frame with an opening through which the port door interfaces with a container door of a container for holding semiconductor workpieces. In one embodiment, a movable closure mechanism is connected to the port door and is defined to be movable in a controlled manner relative to both the port door and the frame. In this embodiment, a stationary closure mechanism is disposed on the frame proximate to the opening. In another embodiment, a stationary closure mechanism is connected to the port door, and a movable closure mechanism is disposed on the frame proximate to the opening. In both embodiments, the movable closure mechanism is defined to engage with the stationary closure mechanism such that movement of the movable closure mechanism to engage with the stationary closure mechanism applies a closing force between the port door and the container door.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 30, 2010
    Date of Patent: October 28, 2014
    Assignee: Brooks Automation, Inc.
    Inventor: Anthony C Bonora
  • Patent number: 8851008
    Abstract: A substrate treating apparatus includes a plurality of substrate treatment lines arranged vertically. Each substrate treatment line has a plurality of main transport mechanisms arranged horizontally, and a plurality of treating units provided for each main transport mechanism for treating substrates. A series of treatments is carried out for the substrates, with each main transport mechanism transporting the substrates to the treating units associated therewith, and transferring the substrates to the other main transport mechanism horizontally adjacent thereto. The substrate treating apparatus realizes increased processing capabilities by treating the substrates in parallel through the substrate treatment lines.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 27, 2008
    Date of Patent: October 7, 2014
    Assignee: Sokudo Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Yoshiteru Fukutomi, Tsuyoshi Mitsuhashi, Hiroyuki Ogura, Kenya Morinishi, Yasuo Kawamatsu, Hiromichi Nagashima
  • Patent number: 8847122
    Abstract: A method and an apparatus for transferring a substrate are described. In the method, a substrate is provided on the surface of a first plate at a first position, the first plate is moved from the first position to a second position in an upper space of a second plate, the substrate is lifted away from the surface of the first plate, the first plate is moved away from the second position, and the substrate is put on the surface of the second plate from the upper space. The apparatus includes a first plate and a second plate each having a surface for carrying the substrate, wherein the first plate can be moved between the first position and the second position.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 8, 2009
    Date of Patent: September 30, 2014
    Assignee: MACRONIX International Co., Ltd.
    Inventor: Chin-Cheng Yang
  • Patent number: 8827695
    Abstract: A semiconductor manufacturing system, an interface system, a carrier, and a method for providing an ambient controlled environment is disclosed. The semiconductor manufacturing system comprises a plurality of process chambers; at least one interface system, wherein the interface system includes a first ambient control element; at least one carrier, wherein the carrier comprises a second ambient control element; and a control module coupled to the plurality of process chambers, the at least one interface system, and the at least one carrier.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 5, 2009
    Date of Patent: September 9, 2014
    Assignee: Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company, Ltd.
    Inventors: Yi-Li Hsiao, Chen-Hua Yu, Jean Wang, Ming-che Ho, Chien-Ling Hwang, Jui-Pin Hung
  • Patent number: 8821099
    Abstract: A substrate loading device having a frame, a cassette support, and a user interface. The frame is connected to a substrate processing apparatus. The frame has a transport opening through which substrates are transported between the device and processing apparatus. The cassette support is connected to the frame for holding at least one substrate holding cassette. The user interface is arranged for inputting information, and is mounted to the frame so that the user interface is integral with the frame.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 11, 2005
    Date of Patent: September 2, 2014
    Assignee: Brooks Automation, Inc.
    Inventors: Daniel A. Hall, Glenn L. Sindledecker, Matthew W. Coady, Marcello Trolio, Michael Spinazola
  • Patent number: 8807914
    Abstract: The present invention provides a seal device comprising a sealing passage which allows communication between a first space and a second space, and evacuation lines individually connected to the first space and the sealing passage. A gas feed line for feeding dry gas is connected to the sealing passage.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 7, 2008
    Date of Patent: August 19, 2014
    Assignee: Ebara Corporation
    Inventor: Hiroyuki Shinozaki
  • Patent number: 8776841
    Abstract: The present invention provides a method, system, and components for protecting reticles and specifically for minimizing haze formation on reticles during storage and use. By substantially continually maintaining a purge in a storage housing having a reduced humidity level on reticles or by temporarily storing the reticle in a container in proximity to a desiccant or getter when not being purged, haze formation can be eliminated, minimized, or sufficiently controlled. Moreover, a filter media in the container may be positioned to be “recharged” during the substantially continual purging of the reticle, a reduced desirable humidity level can be readily maintained in the reticle container when the container is not currently being purged. Additionally, the system of the invention can comprise an ionizer associated with the purge system. For example, the ionizer can be associated with at least one of the plurality of purge lines of the purge system.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 19, 2007
    Date of Patent: July 15, 2014
    Assignee: Entegris, Inc.
    Inventors: Oleg P. Kishkovich, Xavier Gabarre, William M. Goodwin, James Lo, Troy Scoggins
  • Patent number: 8777540
    Abstract: An apparatus for storing contamination-sensitive flat articles, in particular for storing semiconductor wafers, comprises a plurality of box-like compartments stationary arranged on a fixed mounting rack. The compartments are open on a front side and are arranged in rows and columns side by side and one above the other on the fixed mounting rack. The compartments each have a plurality of slotted holders for receiving the flat articles, and they surround a first handling unit configured for automatically inserting and removing the flat articles into and out of the slotted holders. A closed housing forms a clean room where both the plurality of compartments and the first handling unit are arranged.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 16, 2008
    Date of Patent: July 15, 2014
    Assignee: Dynamic Microsystems Semiconductor Equipment GmbH
    Inventors: Lutz Rebstock, Michael Meichsner
  • Patent number: 8777547
    Abstract: A substrate transporting robot apparatus is disclosed which is adapted to transport a substrate to and from a chamber of an electronic device processing system. The apparatus may include an upper arm rotatable in an X-Y plane, a forearm rotatable relative to the upper arm in the X-Y plane, and a wrist member rotatable relative to the forearm in the X-Y plane, the wrist member including an end effector adapted to carry a substrate. The wrist member may be subjected to independent rotation such that various degrees of yaw may be imparted to the wrist member. In some aspects, the independent rotation is provided without a motive power device (e.g., motor) being provided on the arms or wrist member, i.e., the wrist member may be remotely driven. Systems and methods using the robot apparatus are also provided as are numerous other aspects.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 8, 2010
    Date of Patent: July 15, 2014
    Assignee: Applied Materials, Inc.
    Inventors: Izya Kremerman, Jeffrey C. Hudgens
  • Patent number: 8776363
    Abstract: A method for supporting a semiconductor wafer includes providing a device wafer to a magnetizable ring, providing a magnetizable carrier to the device wafer, and magnetizing the magnetizable ring and the magnetizable carrier to form a magnetized clamp having a magnetized ring and magnetized carrier. The magnetized clamp securely clamps the device wafer therebetween.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 23, 2012
    Date of Patent: July 15, 2014
    Assignee: United Microelectronics Corp.
    Inventors: Chang-Sheng Hsu, Li-Che Chen, Kuo-Yuh Yang, Chia-Wen Lien, Yan-Da Chen
  • Patent number: 8758514
    Abstract: A cluster type semiconductor processing apparatus includes a wafer handling chamber having a polygonal base including multiple sides for wafer processing chambers and two adjacent sides for wafer loading/unloading chambers as viewed in a direction of an axis of the wafer handling chamber. An angle A between two adjacent sides of the multiple sides for wafer processing chambers is greater than an angle B which is calculated by dividing 360° by the number of the total sides consisting of the multiple sides for wafer processing chambers and the two adjacent sides for wafer loading/unloading chambers.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 2, 2007
    Date of Patent: June 24, 2014
    Assignee: ASM Japan K.K.
    Inventors: Masahiro Takizawa, Masaei Suwada, Takashi Hagino
  • Patent number: 8758513
    Abstract: A processing apparatus includes a loading chamber; a buffer chamber connected to the loading chamber; a first process chamber connected to the buffer chamber; and an unloading chamber connected to the first process chamber, wherein a processing path through the processing apparatus is a forward in-line path in a direction through the loading chamber, the buffer chamber, the first process chamber, and the unloading chamber.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 15, 2006
    Date of Patent: June 24, 2014
    Assignees: LG Display Co., Ltd., Avaco Co., Ltd., LG Electronics Inc.
    Inventors: Jin Seok Lee, Hyuk Sang Yoon, Hwan Kyu Yoo, Byeong Eok Hwang
  • Patent number: 8746666
    Abstract: A media carrier, adapted to hold a plurality of pieces of magnetic media, is disclosed. This media carrier can be placed on the workpiece support, or platen, allowing the magnetic media to be processed. In some embodiments, the media carrier is designed such that only one side of the magnetic media is exposed, requiring a robot or other equipment to invert each piece of media in the carrier to process the second side. In other embodiments, the media carrier is designed such that both sides of the magnetic media are exposed. In this scenario, the media carrier is inverted on the platen to allow processing of the second side.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 5, 2011
    Date of Patent: June 10, 2014
    Assignee: Varian Semiconductor Equipment Associates, Inc.
    Inventors: Richard Hertel, Julian Blake, Edward Macintosh, Alexander Kontos, Frank Sinclair, Christopher Rowland, Mayur Jagtap, Sankar Ganesh Kolappan
  • Patent number: 8746669
    Abstract: To provide a chip supply pallet preventing destruction of a chip and preventing a reduction in a productivity from being brought about in exchanging a wafer sheet, the chip supply pallet includes a first member 33 having a tension ring 51 brought into contact with a wafer sheet from a lower side, and a fixing member 54 of fixing a ring frame holding the wafer sheet on an inner side on a lower side of the wafer sheet brought into contact with the tension ring 51, and a second member 34 having a fixed portion for fixing to a predetermined position of a chip supply apparatus and a held portion 36 of being held when the chip interchanging pallet 3 is transferred, and the first member 33 is configured to be able to rotationally displace relative to the second member 34 fixed to the predetermined position of the chip supply apparatus.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 6, 2009
    Date of Patent: June 10, 2014
    Assignee: Panasonic Corporation
    Inventor: Yasuo Takanami
  • Patent number: 8741096
    Abstract: An apparatus for semiconductor processing capable of performing semiconductor processing such as etching, depositing, etc. on a surface of a substrate such as a wafer. The apparatus for semiconductor processing, comprises: a reaction chamber having a gate through which a substrate to be processed is transferred; one or more shower heads disposed at an upper side of the reaction chamber, for spraying gas so as to perform semiconductor processing; one or more wafer supporting units disposed at an inner lower side of the reaction chamber in correspondence to each of the shower heads, for supporting the substrate; a processing space forming unit disposed in the reaction chamber, for forming a processing space for semiconductor processing by sealing the shower heads and the wafer supporting units; and an exhausting system connected to the processing space forming unit for controlling a pressure and air exhaustion inside the reaction chamber and the processing space formed by the processing space forming unit.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 28, 2007
    Date of Patent: June 3, 2014
    Assignee: Wonik IPS Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Sang-Jun Park, Ho-Young Lee, Chun-Woo Lee
  • Patent number: 8702370
    Abstract: A substrate transfer method for transferring target substrates proceeds in a substrate processing system for performing processes including a photolithography sequence on the target substrates. The system includes a first automated substrate transfer line configured to transfer the target substrates among a plurality of process sections for respectively performing processes on the target substrates, and a second automated substrate transfer line of a cyclical type dedicated to a plurality of process apparatuses of a photolithography process section, which are configured to perform a series of processes in the photolithography sequence, the second automated substrate transfer line being located relative to the first automated substrate transfer line so as for the target substrates to be transferred therebetween.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 13, 2012
    Date of Patent: April 22, 2014
    Assignee: Tokyo Electron Limited
    Inventors: Yuichi Yamamoto, Tadayuki Yamaguchi, Yasuhito Saiga, Yoshiaki Yamada
  • Patent number: 8690516
    Abstract: Provided is a method of adjusting a velocity of a transfer arm in a transfer member. The method includes, accelerating the transfer arm from a start point to a first point where a movement velocity reaches a preset reference velocity, dividing a division from the first point to a second point into movement divisions to move the transfer arm in any one of a deceleration motion, an acceleration motion, and a uniform motion according to the respective movement divisions, and decelerating the transfer arm from the second point to a target point. The motion of the transfer arm in the current movement division is different from that in the movement division just before the current movement division. Thus, a different impulse from that in the precedent movement division is applied to a substrate loaded on the transfer arm. Accordingly, the impulse response superposition cancels residual vibration of the substrate, so as to improve transfer efficiency of the transfer member.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 6, 2009
    Date of Patent: April 8, 2014
    Assignee: Semes Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Kwang-Jin Hong, Sang-Eun Jun
  • Patent number: 8663489
    Abstract: A method for replacing plural substrates to be processed by a substrate processing apparatus which includes a substrate processing chamber, a load lock chamber, and a conveying apparatus including first and second conveying members for conveying the plural substrates into and out from the substrate processing chamber and the load lock chamber. The method includes the steps of a) conveying a first substrate out from the substrate processing chamber with the first conveying member, b) conveying a second substrate into the substrate processing chamber with the second conveying member, c) conveying the second substrate out from the load lock chamber with the second conveying member, and d) conveying the first substrate into the load lock chamber with the first conveying member. The steps c) and d) are performed between step a) and step b).
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 26, 2010
    Date of Patent: March 4, 2014
    Assignee: Tokyo Electron Limited
    Inventors: Shigeru Ishizawa, Hiroshi Koizumi, Tatsuya Ogi
  • Patent number: 8651789
    Abstract: A substrate processing apparatus is presented having a transport chamber defining substantially linear substrate transport paths, a linear array of substrate holding modules, each communicably connected to the chamber. The substrate transport has at least one transporter capable of holding and moving the substrate on more than one substantially linear substrate transport paths. The transport chamber having different transport tubes at least one of which is sealable at both ends of the transport tube and configured to hold an isolated atmosphere different from that of the transport tubes, each of the different transport tubes having one of the substrate transport paths located therein different from another of the transport paths located in another of the transport tubes, and being communicably connected to each other, where at least one of the transport tubes is configured to provide uninterrupted transit of the substrate transport through the transport tubes.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 13, 2011
    Date of Patent: February 18, 2014
    Assignee: Brooks Automation, Inc.
    Inventors: Christopher Hofmeister, Robert T. Caveney
  • Patent number: 8631809
    Abstract: An interface block is constituted by a cleaning/drying processing block and a carry-in/carry-out block. The cleaning/drying processing block includes cleaning/drying processing sections and a transport section. The transport section is provided with a transport mechanism. The carry-in/carry-out block is provided with a transport mechanism. The transport mechanism carries substrates in and out of an exposure device.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 17, 2010
    Date of Patent: January 21, 2014
    Assignee: Sokudo Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Tetsuya Hamada, Takashi Taguchi
  • Patent number: 8616821
    Abstract: The present disclosure provides a system and method for processing a semiconductor substrate wherein a substrate is received at a load lock interface. The substrate is transferred from the load lock interface to a process module using a first module configured for unprocessed substrates. A manufacturing process is performed on the substrate within the process module. Thereafter, the substrate is transferred from the process module to the load lock interface using a second module configured for processed substrates.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 26, 2010
    Date of Patent: December 31, 2013
    Assignee: Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company, Ltd.
    Inventors: Shao-Yen Ku, Chi-Ming Yang, Ming-Tsao Chiang, Yu-Fen Tzeng, Chin-Hsiang Lin
  • Patent number: 8602706
    Abstract: A semiconductor workpiece processing apparatus having a first chamber, a transport vehicle, and another chamber. The first chamber is capable of being isolated from an outside atmosphere. The transport vehicle is located in the first chamber and is movably supported from the first chamber for moving linearly relative to the first chamber. The transport vehicle includes a base, and an integral semiconductor workpiece transfer arm movably mounted to the base and capable of multi-access movement relative to the base. The other chamber is communicably connected to the first chamber via a closable opening of the first chamber. The opening is sized to allow the transport vehicle to transit between the first chamber and the other chamber through the opening.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 17, 2009
    Date of Patent: December 10, 2013
    Assignee: Brooks Automation, Inc.
    Inventors: Christopher Hofmeister, Robert T. Caveney
  • Patent number: 8601975
    Abstract: In a first aspect, a loadport is provided. The loadport has a plate adapted to couple to a door of a substrate carrier to open the substrate carrier wherein the plate includes a first opening adapted to couple to a first port in the door of the substrate carrier on a first side of the plate and to couple to a gas source on a second side of the plate, and wherein the loadport is adapted to allow a flow of gas into the substrate carrier via the first opening in the plate. Methods of purging substrate carriers are provided, as are numerous other aspects.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 2, 2011
    Date of Patent: December 10, 2013
    Assignee: Applied Materials, Inc.
    Inventors: Vinay K. Shah, Eric Englhardt, Jeffrey C. Hudgens, Martin R. Elliott
  • Patent number: 8596312
    Abstract: Disclosed herein is an apparatus including: a table configured to receive a container that stores an object therein, the container including a bottom surface provided with a positioning groove and including a charging inlet through which a gas is charged into the container; a positioning pin projecting from the table and adapted to engage with the positioning groove of the container; a nozzle configured to charge the gas into the container through the charging inlet; and a drive unit configured to move the nozzle into contact with the charging inlet of the container after the positioning pin is engaged with the positioning groove.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 2, 2011
    Date of Patent: December 3, 2013
    Assignee: Sinfonia Technology Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Mitsuo Natsume, Mitsutoshi Ochiai, Takumi Mizokawa
  • Patent number: 8591700
    Abstract: The present disclosure is directed to a susceptor support that includes a hub and a plurality of arms extending radially from the hub, where each arm has a terminal end positioned away from the hub. The susceptor support also includes a plurality of elongated rectangular tips formed at the terminal end of each arm, each tip having a length and a width, wherein the length is greater than the width.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 19, 2010
    Date of Patent: November 26, 2013
    Assignee: STMicroelectronics Pte Ltd.
    Inventors: Roy G. Gatchalian, Joseph Gregorio Soriano, Hee Cher Heng
  • Publication number: 20130294877
    Abstract: A vacuum robot adapted to grip and transport a substrate. The robot includes a robot drive coupled to an arm and having an end-effector adapted to support the substrate. A robot gripper system is coupled to the end-effector including a front support having at least one hard stop, a movable contact element coupled to the end-effector, a bias device coupled to the contact element, and at least one actuator coupled to the end-effector configured to move the contact element between a release position and a grip position. The bias device is configured to passively bias the contact element in the grip position such that the contact element contacts an edge of the substrate to urge the substrate against the at least one hard stop to secure the substrate in the grip position and to passively bias the contact element in the release position such that the contact element is retained in the release position.
    Type: Application
    Filed: November 29, 2012
    Publication date: November 7, 2013
    Applicant: Persimmon Technologies Corporation
    Inventor: Martin Hosek
  • Patent number: 8562275
    Abstract: A transfer device 17 in a semiconductor processing system includes first and second actuation mechanisms 9A, 9B having first and second support sections movable on first and second vertical planes, respectively, the latter being parallel with each other. First and second movable blocks 18A, 18B are supported on the first and second support sections so that they may be horizontally moved by the first and second actuation mechanisms. Disposed on the first and second movable blocks are first and second handling mechanism 19A, 19B capable of extension and contraction for handling a processing subject substrate W. A control section 20 controls the operation of the first and second actuation mechanisms so that the first and second movable blocks may not interfere with each other.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 16, 2012
    Date of Patent: October 22, 2013
    Assignee: Tokyo Electron Limited
    Inventor: Tsutomu Hiroki
  • Patent number: 8560108
    Abstract: Even when a module constituting a multi-module becomes an unavailable module, transfer of substrates can be promptly performed, while restricting generation of inferior products. When a destination module of a multi-module becomes unavailable before a substrate is transferred to the destination module, a destination of the substrate is changed to a module to which a substrate subsequent to the substrate is to be loaded. Upon generation of an unavailable module, before the transfer unit accesses the module on an upstream end of the transfer cycle, the transfer cycle proceeds until a precedent substrate becomes ready to be unloaded from the changed destination module. Alternatively, upon generation of an unavailable module, when the transfer unit is located on an upstream side of the unavailable module in the transfer cycle, the transfer operation of the transfer unit is made standby until a precedent substrate becomes ready to be unloaded in the changed destination module.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 17, 2010
    Date of Patent: October 15, 2013
    Assignee: Tokyo Electron Limited
    Inventors: Kenichirou Matsuyama, Takeshi Matsumoto
  • Patent number: 8556566
    Abstract: Aspects of embodiments of the present invention are directed toward a method of stacking disk-shaped substrates for polishing without using a centering shaft and an apparatus for implementing the method. A stack of disk-shaped substrates can be concentrically aligned without contacting the inside circumferential surfaces of the disk-shaped substrates by applying pressure to the outside edges of the disk-shaped substrates in different lateral directions.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 30, 2011
    Date of Patent: October 15, 2013
    Assignee: WD Media, LLC
    Inventors: Shoji Suzuki, David A. Throckmorton