Includes Means For Gripping Wafer Patents (Class 414/941)
  • Patent number: 9978631
    Abstract: A wafer pick-and-place method and system is provided. During the wafer pick-and-place operation, the distance between the fork of the robot and the target wafer is detected to determine whether the robot will collide with the target wafer. Furthermore, the tilted angle of the target wafer relative to the fork is calculated to determine whether the wafer will slip off. If collision or wafer slippery may occur, the pick-and-place operation is stopped. Therefore, wafer damages due to unexpected contact between the fork and the wafer can be avoided, and wafer handling safety can be improved.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 30, 2016
    Date of Patent: May 22, 2018
    Assignee: BEIJING NAURA MICROELECTRONICS EQUIPMENT CO., LTD.
    Inventor: Dong Xu
  • Patent number: 9401296
    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 includes a front support having at least one hard stop, a movable contact element coupled to the end-effector, a bias device 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: Grant
    Filed: November 29, 2012
    Date of Patent: July 26, 2016
    Assignee: Persimmon Technologies Corporation
    Inventor: Martin Hosek
  • Patent number: 9214375
    Abstract: An apparatus is provided for lifting a substrate. The apparatus comprises a first piece and a second piece. The apparatus further comprises a set of first contact points in a plane and a set of second contact points, where at least one contact point from each set is present on the first piece and the second piece. The apparatus also comprises an actuator that translates the first piece, substantially parallel to the plane, between a first position and a second position relative to the second piece. Additionally, the first position arranges the set of first contact points so that all of the contact points of the set of first contact points are able to engage the substrate, and the second position arranges the set of second contact points so that all of the contact points of the second set of contact points are able to engage the substrate.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 10, 2012
    Date of Patent: December 15, 2015
    Assignee: Lam Research Corporation
    Inventors: Matthew J. Rodnick, Brandon L. Senn, Andrew J. Nagengast, Richard M. Blank
  • Patent number: 9004497
    Abstract: In a device for machining, in particular etching and/or developing, substrates, in particular wafers, in particular etching and/or developing, having a turntable, the turntable has a Venturi gap.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 30, 2012
    Date of Patent: April 14, 2015
    Assignee: solar-semi GmbH
    Inventor: Pirmin Muffler
  • Patent number: 8998561
    Abstract: According to one embodiment, a gripping device grips a rim of a workpiece by opening and closing gripping plates. The device includes a gripping unit, a hoisting and lowering unit and a motion control unit. The gripping unit includes a first and a second gripping plate. The first gripping plate has a first gripper to contact the rim. The second gripping plate has a second gripper to contact the rim. At least one of the first and second gripping plates is moved and the first and second gripper are spaced from each other. The hoisting and lowering unit is configured to hoist and lower the gripping unit. The motion control unit is configured to control open/close operations and hoisting and lowering operations. The motion control unit mechanically controls first first hoisting and lowering operations, controls second the open/close operations, and controls third second hoisting and lowering operations.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 29, 2011
    Date of Patent: April 7, 2015
    Assignee: Shibaura Mechatronics Corporation
    Inventor: Masaaki Furuya
  • 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: 8983659
    Abstract: A robot system according to the embodiments includes a robot that includes a hand including a gripping mechanism that grips a thin plate-shaped work and an arm that moves the hand, and a robot control apparatus that controls the robot. The robot control apparatus, when causing the robot to transfer the work at a predetermined work transfer position by controlling the robot, performs a presence/absence confirmation of the work by operating the gripping mechanism while causing the hand to retract after the hand reaches the work transfer position.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 14, 2012
    Date of Patent: March 17, 2015
    Assignee: Kabushiki Kaisha Yaskawa Denki
    Inventor: Yoshiki Kimura
  • Patent number: 8976336
    Abstract: A lithographic apparatus is described that comprises a support structure to hold an object. The object may be a patterning device or a substrate to be exposed. The support structure comprises a chuck, on which the object is supported, and an array of shear-compliant elongated elements normal to the chuck and the stage, such that first ends of the elongated elements contact a surface of the chuck and second ends of the elongated elements contact a stage. Through using the array of elongated elements, a transfer of stress between the stage and the chuck is substantially uniform, resulting in minimization of slippage of the object relative to the surface of the chuck during a deformation of the chuck due to the stress.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 23, 2014
    Date of Patent: March 10, 2015
    Assignee: ASML Holding N.V.
    Inventors: Samir A. Nayfeh, Mark Edd Williams, Justin Matthew Verdirame
  • 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: 8960686
    Abstract: An apparatus, particularly a chuck for retaining a thin part for micro-machining processing, is disclosed. The chuck is formed of a plate-shaped body having a first surface and a second surface opposite the first surface. The plate-shaped body includes a light-transmissive material, and at least one of the first surface or the second surface is a roughened surface. The chuck can be incorporated into a micro-machining system using a chuck support that allows light through to backlight a processed part for inspection.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 30, 2011
    Date of Patent: February 24, 2015
    Assignee: Electro Scientific Industries, Inc.
    Inventor: Robert A. Ferguson
  • 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: 8920097
    Abstract: A wafer handling system includes providing a loadlock tray assembly having a plurality of vertically-stacked loadlock trays; and mounting nipples around each of the plurality of vertically-stacked loadlock trays for supporting a plurality of wafers, each of the nipple having a flat top.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 1, 2007
    Date of Patent: December 30, 2014
    Assignee: GLOBALFOUNDRIES Singapore Pte. Ltd.
    Inventor: Soon Chye Chan
  • 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: 8888920
    Abstract: The present invention is an imprint system including an imprint unit transferring a transfer pattern to a coating film formed on a substrate using a template having the transfer pattern formed on a front surface thereof to form a predetermined pattern in the coating film, the imprint system including: a substrate carry-in/out station connected to the imprint unit, capable of keeping a plurality of the substrates, and carrying the substrate into/out of the imprint unit side; and a template carry-in/out station connected to the imprint unit, capable of keeping a plurality of the templates, and carrying the template into/out of the imprint unit side at a predetermined timing.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 11, 2010
    Date of Patent: November 18, 2014
    Assignee: Tokyo Electron Limited
    Inventors: Shoichi Terada, Yoshio Kimura, Takahiro Kitano
  • Patent number: 8888869
    Abstract: Provided herein are methods, apparatuses and systems for fabricating photovoltaic cells and modules. In certain embodiments, the methods, apparatuses and systems involve coating ferromagnetic substrates with thin film solar cell materials and using magnetic force to constrain, move or otherwise manipulate partially fabricated cells or modules. According to various embodiments, the methods, apparatuses and systems provide magnetically actuated handling throughout a photovoltaic cell or module fabrication process, from forming photovoltaic cell layers on a substrate to packaging the module for transport and installation. The magnetically manipulated processing provides advantages over conventional photovoltaic module processing operations, including fewer mechanical components, greater control over placement and tolerances, and ease of handling. As a result, the methods, apparatuses and systems provide highly efficient, low maintenance photovoltaic module fabrication processes.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 15, 2011
    Date of Patent: November 18, 2014
    Assignee: Hanergy Holding Group Ltd.
    Inventors: Bruce Krein, Darin Birtwhistle, Jeff Thompson, William Sanders, Paul Alexander
  • Patent number: 8864202
    Abstract: An end effector is disclosed for use in substrate processing. The end effector includes a effector body portion, a contact pad pocket formed in the end effector body, a spring retaining pocket formed in the end effector body adjacent the contact pad pocket and extending to an edge of the end effector body, and a pair of through-holes extending from the spring retaining pocket to the contact pad pocket. The end effector can include a contact pad seated within the contact pad pocket, the contact pad having at least one retaining channel formed therein, and a retaining spring having a pair of retaining arms extending from the retaining spring pocket through the through-holes and into the contact pad pocket. The retaining arms may extend at least partially into the at least one retaining channel of the contact pad and may thereby restrict movement of the contact pad.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 12, 2013
    Date of Patent: October 21, 2014
    Assignee: Varian Semiconductor Equipment Associates, Inc.
    Inventor: Michael A. Schrameyer
  • Patent number: 8840728
    Abstract: The present invention is a template treatment apparatus forming a film of a release agent on a template having a transfer pattern formed on a front surface thereof, the template treatment apparatus including: a treatment station forming a film of a release agent on the front surface of the template; and a template carry-in/out station capable of keeping a plurality of the templates, and carrying the template into/out of the treatment station, wherein the treatment station includes: a cleaning unit cleaning the front surface of the template; a coating unit applying a release agent to the cleaned front surface of the template; a heating unit baking the applied release agent; and a carry unit carrying the template to the cleaning unit, the coating unit, and the heating unit.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 21, 2010
    Date of Patent: September 23, 2014
    Assignee: Tokyo Electron Limited
    Inventors: Shoichi Terada, Yoshio Kimura, Takahiro Kitano
  • 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: 8800998
    Abstract: A semiconductor wafer processing tool has a support structure for a coarse motion positioning system. A measurement head having a rigid super structure is supported from the support structure by vibration isolators and a top plate is mounted to the super structure. A vacuum transfer chuck is releasably carried by the coarse motion positioning system and releasably adherable to the top plate by application of vacuum. The vacuum transfer chuck supports a semiconductor wafer.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 30, 2011
    Date of Patent: August 12, 2014
    Assignee: Multiprobe, Inc.
    Inventors: Andrew N. Erickson, Jeffrey M. Markakis, Anton L. Riley
  • Patent number: 8801069
    Abstract: An apparatus for gripping a substrate on its peripheral edge including a substrate support having proximate and distal ends, at least one distal rest pad disposed at the distal end, the at least one distal rest pad includes a back stop portion and is configured to support the peripheral edge of the substrate, at least one proximate rest pad disposed at the proximate end, the at least one proximate rest pad being configured to support the peripheral edge of the substrate, and an active contact member assembly disposed at the proximate end, the active contact member assembly including a pusher member, a contact member and a rotatable coupling member that are reciprocably movable towards the distal end for urging the substrate against the back stop portion, the contact member being rotatably secured to the pusher member and free to rotate about an axis of the rotatable coupling member.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 28, 2011
    Date of Patent: August 12, 2014
    Assignee: Brooks Automation, Inc.
    Inventors: Martin Hosek, Jayaraman Krishnasamy, Leonard T. Lilliston, III
  • Patent number: 8796589
    Abstract: In a first aspect, a first substrate processing system is provided that includes (1) a chamber having a plurality of opening through which a substrate may be transported; (2) a substrate carrier opener coupled to a first one of the plurality of openings; (3) a thermal processing chamber coupled to a second one of the plurality of openings; and (4) a wafer handler contained within the chamber, having a substrate clamping blade and a blade adapted to transport high temperature substrates.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 13, 2002
    Date of Patent: August 5, 2014
    Assignee: Applied Materials, Inc.
    Inventors: Efrain Quiles, Mehran Behdjat, Robert B. Lowrance, Michael Robert Rice, Brent Vopat
  • Patent number: 8786832
    Abstract: A lithographic apparatus is described that comprises a support structure to hold an object. The object may be a patterning device or a substrate to be exposed. The support structure comprises a chuck, on which the object is supported, and an array of shear-compliant elongated elements normal to the chuck and the stage, such that first ends of the elongated elements contact a surface of the chuck and second ends of the elongated elements contact a stage. Through using the array of elongated elements, a transfer of stress between the stage and the chuck is substantially uniform, resulting in minimization of slippage of the object relative to the surface of the chuck during a deformation of the chuck due to the stress.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 10, 2013
    Date of Patent: July 22, 2014
    Assignee: ASML Holding N.V.
    Inventors: Samir A. Nayfeh, Mark Edd Williams, Justin Matthew Verdirame
  • 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: 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: 8770640
    Abstract: A robot hand having a suction holding unit on one face side holds a plate-shaped work by suction. An outer circumferential edge of the plate-shaped work is held, without contact with a surface of the plate-shaped work, by an outer circumference holding unit provided on the other face side. The robot hand can be used to hold the plate-shaped work yet to be worked by the suction holding unit, and to hold the plate-shaped work having been worked by the outer circumference holding unit. This prevents working debris from being deposited on the plate-shaped work yet to be worked and prevents defective working from occurring. In addition, since the plate-shaped work having been worked is held by the outer circumference holding unit, the robot hand does not make contact with surfaces of the worked plate-shaped work, and, accordingly, no contact marks are formed on the surfaces of the work.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 13, 2013
    Date of Patent: July 8, 2014
    Assignee: Disco Corporation
    Inventor: Yasutomo Kimura
  • Patent number: 8764085
    Abstract: A clamping device comprising: a distal end side stationary blocks which are provided on a side of a distal end of a workpiece retaining base, and in which stationary tilt faces tilting downwardly to a central direction of the workpiece are formed; a proximal end side stationary blocks which are provided on a side of a proximal end of the workpiece retaining base, and in which upward stationary tilt faces tilting downward toward the central direction of the workpiece are formed; and a movable block which is arranged at a position proximal to the proximal end side stationary blocks, and is capable of advancing to or retracting from a side of the distal end side stationary blocks with the workpiece being held between the blocks, and in which a downward movable tilt face tilting upwardly toward the central direction of the workpiece is formed.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 1, 2013
    Date of Patent: July 1, 2014
    Assignee: Sinfonia Technology Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Yuji Urabe, Yasumichi Mieno
  • Patent number: 8752872
    Abstract: An end effector blade (201) is provided which has a region (203) defined thereon for receiving an article. The end effector blade is also equipped with a plurality of tabs (213) disposed about the periphery of said region. Each tab moves from a first position when no article is present in the region, to a second position when an article is disposed in the region, and each tab pressingly engages the article when it is in the second position.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 9, 2010
    Date of Patent: June 17, 2014
    Assignee: Fabworx Solutions, Inc.
    Inventor: Richard J. Kent
  • Patent number: 8747050
    Abstract: A substrate transport apparatus including a first shaftless rotary motor including a first stator and a first rotor, the first stator being linearly distributed and the first rotor being coupled to a first arm, a second shaftless rotary motor including a second stator and second rotor, the second stator being linearly distributed and the second rotor being coupled to a second arm, the second arm being connected to the first arm and a first substrate support being coupled to at least one of the first and second arms, wherein the first stator and second stator are configured so that the first and second arms and the first substrate support are inside the stators and a motor output at a connection between the first and second shaftless rotary motors and a respective one of the first and second arms is a resultant force disposed peripheral to the first and second arms.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 14, 2012
    Date of Patent: June 10, 2014
    Assignee: Brooks Automation, Inc.
    Inventors: Christopher Hofmeister, Robert T. Caveney
  • Patent number: 8731701
    Abstract: After a cassette is mounted on a cassette mounting part, a control unit instructs a substrate treatment apparatus to start treatment on substrates in the cassette. Thereafter, the control unit indicates, to the substrate treatment apparatus, a cassette on the cassette mounting part to which a substrate is transferred at completion of the treatment. If the transfer destination cassette for the substrate at the completion of treatment has not been indicated when a number of remaining treatment steps for the substrate reaches a predetermined set number, an alarm is given from the substrate treatment apparatus. This alarm is sent from the substrate treatment apparatus to the control unit, and the control unit indicates a transfer destination cassette for the substrate.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 21, 2008
    Date of Patent: May 20, 2014
    Assignee: Tokyo Electron Limited
    Inventors: Wataru Tsukinoki, Yuichi Yamamoto
  • Patent number: 8720965
    Abstract: A robot hand and a robot according to an embodiment include supporting units. The supporting units are arranged on a base and contact the peripheral border of a board to grip the board. At least one of the supporting units rotates while abutting on the peripheral border of the board.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 8, 2012
    Date of Patent: May 13, 2014
    Assignee: Kabushiki Kaisha Yaskawa Denki
    Inventors: Kazunori Hino, Ryuji Ando, Katsuhiko Shimada
  • Patent number: 8715418
    Abstract: A semiconductor processing system and related methodology is disclosed and which includes a processing chamber having an internal cavity and a transfer port; a transfer chamber which is positioned adjacent to the processing chamber; and a transfer apparatus having at least two extendible arms which are positioned within the transfer chamber, and wherein each of the extendible arms carry a semiconductor work piece into and out of the processing chamber by way of the transfer port, and wherein the at least two extendible arms are selectively vertically moveable, and further are each selectively moveable in the direction of the transfer port.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 24, 2006
    Date of Patent: May 6, 2014
    Assignee: Advanced Micro-Fabrication Equipment, Inc. Asia
    Inventor: AiHua Chen
  • Patent number: 8714611
    Abstract: Handling device for handling of a wafer in the processing of the wafer with the following features: a carrier with a flat receiving side for holding the wafer, an especially lattice-like grid structure which is raised on the receiving side relative to the receiving side, a flexible cover which covers the grid structure relative to the carrier, sealing it, for fixing of the wafer on the carrier, and a grid space which is bordered by the cover and the carrier can be exposed to negative pressure, characterized in that the grid structure and the cover with the receiving side form an especially trough-shaped receiving space for holding of receiving structures which are provided on the wafer and which are raised relative to the wafer receiving side.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 23, 2010
    Date of Patent: May 6, 2014
    Assignee: EV Group GmbH
    Inventors: Ingo Brandst├Ątter, Thomas Wagenleitner, Martin Schmidbauer
  • Patent number: 8703583
    Abstract: A technique with which die bonding can be carried out without forming a void in a bond area is provided. A vacuum supply line that connects to a vacuum chuck hole formed in the bottom face of a vacuuming collet and supplies the vacuuming collet with reduced pressure for vacuum chucking a chip is constructed of two systems. That is, the vacuum supply line is so structured that a first pipe and a second pipe connect to the vacuuming collet. The first pipe supplies the vacuuming collet with a vacuum that provides suction force when a chip is unstuck from a dicing tape and transported to a mounting position on a wiring substrate. The second pipe supplies the vacuuming collet with a vacuum that provides suction force when a chip is mounted over a wiring substrate. The intensity of the vacuum (suction force) supplied to the vacuuming collet is controlled by opening or closing valves respectively installed in the pipes.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 13, 2009
    Date of Patent: April 22, 2014
    Assignee: Renesas Electronics Corporation
    Inventors: Hiroshi Maki, Masayuki Mochizuki, Ryuichi Takano, Yoshiaki Makita, Haruhiko Fukasawa, Keisuke Nadamoto, Tatsuyuki Okubo
  • Patent number: 8701862
    Abstract: A disk transportation device includes a pair of rotation arms that are rotatable respectively about a fulcrum shaft extending in the same direction as the axial direction of a center shaft of a disk-shaped recording medium in both sides thereof that pinch the transportation passage of the disk-shaped recording medium transported between a disk changer and a disk drive device; and four transportation rollers of which two at a time are rotatably supported on the pair of rotation arms respectively, wherein the four transportation rollers contact the outer peripheral surface of the disk-shaped recording medium respectively and the pair of rotation arms are rotated in opposite directions to each other in a state where one of the transportation rollers at a time is supported at the pair of the rotation arms respectively contact the outer peripheral surface of the disk-shaped recording medium.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 1, 2012
    Date of Patent: April 22, 2014
    Assignee: Sony Corporation
    Inventors: Takeharu Takasawa, Takeshi Kubo, Naofumi Goto, Akira Suzuki
  • Patent number: 8702142
    Abstract: A grip mechanism for an end effector includes a grip member configured to be coupled to an effector body. A gripper of the grip member is movable based on movement of the grip member such that the gripper is movable along an engagement path to an engagement position where an object such as a substrate can be retained within a retaining region adjacent to the effector body. End effectors for handling objects incorporating one or more grip mechanisms, and methods of handling an object such as a substrate, are also disclosed.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 4, 2012
    Date of Patent: April 22, 2014
    Assignee: Electro Scientific Industries, Inc.
    Inventor: Kyung Young Kim
  • Patent number: 8696042
    Abstract: In an embodiment, the present invention discloses a EUV cleaner system and process for cleaning a EUV carrier. The euv cleaner system comprises separate dirty and cleaned environments, separate cleaning chambers for different components of the double container carrier, gripper arms for picking and placing different components using a same robot handler, gripper arms for holding different components at different locations, horizontal spin cleaning and drying for outer container, hot water and hot air (70C) cleaning process, vertical nozzles and rasterizing megasonic nozzles for cleaning inner container with hot air nozzles for drying, separate vacuum decontamination chambers for outgassing different components, for example, one for inner and one for outer container with high vacuum (e.g., <10?6 Torr) with purge gas, heaters and RGA sensors inside the vacuum chamber, purge gas assembling station, and purge gas loading and unloading station.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 23, 2012
    Date of Patent: April 15, 2014
    Assignee: DYNAMIC MICRO SYSTEM Semiconductor Equipment GmbH
    Inventor: Lutz Rebstock
  • 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: 8657352
    Abstract: A device for use in the semiconductor industry includes a robotic arm whose end effector includes at least two prongs designed to hold a substrate carrier. A pushing member located between the prongs can move independently of the prongs and is configured to exert force against the substrate carrier while the prongs are retracted from the substrate carrier, after the substrate carrier has been brought to its intended position. In this manner, the position of the substrate carrier is maintained at its intended position as the prongs are retracted. Each of the prongs may include a claw or gripping member for grasping the substrate carrier.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 11, 2011
    Date of Patent: February 25, 2014
    Assignee: International Business Machines Corporation
    Inventors: David J. Altknecht, Robert E. Erickson, Christopher O. Lada, Stuart Stephen Papworth Parkin, Mahesh Samant
  • Patent number: 8651796
    Abstract: A substrate transport apparatus including a drive section having at least one drive shaft and at least two scara arms operably coupled to the at least one drive shaft, the at least one drive shaft being a common drive shaft for the at least two scara arms effecting extension and retraction of the at least two scara arms, wherein the at least two scara arms are coupled to each other so that, with the at least one drive shaft coupled to the at least two scara arms, rotation of the drive shaft effects extension and retraction of one of the at least two scara arms substantially independent of motion of another of the at least two scara arms.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 23, 2011
    Date of Patent: February 18, 2014
    Assignee: Brooks Automation, Inc.
    Inventors: Martin Hosek, Ulysses Gilchrist
  • Patent number: 8651539
    Abstract: An integrated grip arm for transfer reticles and carrier boxes is disclosed for improving throughput, yield and reliability of transport equipment. The integrated grip arm comprises a plurality of grippers to accommodate a plurality of reticles and carrier boxes without the need of separate arm or gripper changes. The integrated grip arm can further comprise sensor or means to select the right gripper for the right reticles or carrier boxes.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 13, 2013
    Date of Patent: February 18, 2014
    Assignees: Dynamic Micro System, Semiconductor Equipment GmbH
    Inventor: Lutz Rebstock
  • Patent number: 8622451
    Abstract: An endeffector for handling wafers at a relatively low temperature is disclosed along with an endeffector for handling wafers at a relatively high temperature. Both endeffectors include a base member and uniquely designed support members that are configured to only contact a wafer at the wafer's edge. Further, the support members have an arcuate shape that generally matches a radius of a semiconductor wafer. More specifically, each support member has a curved wafer contact surface that tapers from a maximum radius at a top surface to a minimum radius at a bottom surface. The endeffectors may also include a wafer detection system. The endeffector for handling wafers at relatively low temperatures may also include a pushing device that is used not only to position a wafer but to hold a wafer on the endeffector during acceleration or deceleration of the endeffector caused by a robot arm attached to the endeffector.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 24, 2012
    Date of Patent: January 7, 2014
    Assignee: Mattson Technology, Inc.
    Inventor: Paul Mantz
  • Patent number: 8599531
    Abstract: Systems, apparatus and methods for transporting substrates between system components of an electronic device manufacturing system are provided. The systems and apparatus include an electrostatic end effector having a base, an electrode pair on the base, and spacer members for spacing the substrate from the electrode pairs to provide a gap between the electrode pair and the substrate. Methods of the invention as well as numerous other aspects are provided.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 8, 2010
    Date of Patent: December 3, 2013
    Assignee: Applied Materials, Inc.
    Inventors: Satish Sundar, Jeffrey C. Hudgens, Prudhvi R. Chintalapati, William Nixon Taylor, Jr., William P. Laceky, Jeffrey A. Brodine, Dean C. Hruzek, Mario Dave Silvetti
  • 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
  • Patent number: 8590956
    Abstract: A system for sensing, orienting, and transporting wafers in an automated wafer handling process that reduces the generation of particles and contamination so that the wafer yield is increased. The system includes a robotic arm for moving a wafer from one station to a destination station, and an end-effector connected to an end of the robotic arm for receiving the wafer. The end-effector includes a mechanism for gripping the wafer, a direct drive motor for rotating the wafer gripping mechanism, and at least one sensor for sensing the location and orientation of the wafer. A control processor calculates the location of the center and the notch of the wafer based on measurements by the sensor(s) and generates an alignment signal for rotating the wafer gripping mechanism so that the wafer is oriented at a predetermined position on the end-effector while the robotic arm is moving to another station.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 12, 2011
    Date of Patent: November 26, 2013
    Assignee: Brooks Automation, Inc.
    Inventor: Matthew W. Coady
  • Patent number: 8585112
    Abstract: A sample conveying mechanism minimizes a risk of damage to a sample typified particularly by a photomask, and the sample conveying mechanism provides the sample retention mechanism for holding the sample so as to be suspended and is configured such that a portion close to a pattern surface of the sample is separated from a projection section of a flange for suspending the sample, thereby inhibiting a contact between the pattern surface and members configuring the conveying mechanism.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 29, 2009
    Date of Patent: November 19, 2013
    Assignee: Hitachi High-Technologies Corporation
    Inventors: Katsuya Kawakami, Masahiro Tsunoda, Takashi Gunji, Hidetoshi Sato
  • Patent number: 8562271
    Abstract: A substrate processing system including a load port module configured to hold at least one substrate container for storing and transporting substrates, a substrate processing chamber, an isolatable transfer chamber capable of holding an isolated atmosphere therein configured to couple the substrate processing chamber and the load port module, and a substrate transport mounted at least partially within the transfer chamber having a drive section fixed to the transfer chamber and having a SCARA arm configured to support at least one substrate, the SCARA arm being configured to transport the at least one substrate between the at least one substrate container and the processing chamber with but one touch of the at least one substrate, wherein the SCARA arm comprises a first arm link, a second arm link, and at least one end effector serially pivotally coupled to each other, where the first and second arm links have unequal lengths.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 19, 2008
    Date of Patent: October 22, 2013
    Assignee: Brooks Automation, Inc.
    Inventors: Christopher Hofmeister, Alexander Krupyshev, Ulysses Gilchrist
  • Patent number: 8556318
    Abstract: An electric-controlled operator includes, in part, a first group of grippers and a second group of grippers which are coupled to a base. Grippers in the first group of grippers are adapted to cooperatively grip an object and cooperatively release the object. Grippers in the second group of grippers are adapted to cooperatively grip an object and cooperatively release the object. When the first (or the second) group of grippers cooperatively grips an object, the second (or the first) group of grippers is in a state in which the object is released. The first and second groups of grippers are adapted to put in and take out objects from the same surface of the base thus eliminating the need for turning of the base during the operation.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 14, 2011
    Date of Patent: October 15, 2013
    Assignee: Semiconductor Manufacturing International (Beijing) Corporation
    Inventor: Lianghui Wu
  • Patent number: 8545165
    Abstract: A substrate aligner providing minimal substrate transporter extend and retract motions to quickly align substrate without back side damage while increasing the throughput of substrate processing. In one embodiment, the aligner having an inverted chuck connected to a frame with a substrate transfer system capable of transferring substrate from chuck to transporter without rotationally repositioning substrate. The inverted chuck eliminates aligner obstruction of substrate fiducials and along with the transfer system, allows transporter to remain within the frame during alignment. In another embodiment, the aligner has a rotatable sensor head connected to a frame and a substrate support with transparent rest pads for supporting the substrate during alignment so transporter can remain within the frame during alignment. Substrate alignment is performed independent of fiducial placement on support pads.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 11, 2005
    Date of Patent: October 1, 2013
    Assignee: Brooks Automation, Inc.
    Inventors: Jairo T. Moura, Martin Hosek, Todd Bottomley, Ulysses Gilchrist
  • Patent number: 8529314
    Abstract: When both surfaces of a wafer are sequentially subjected to processing, the wafer is made to be surely supported so that a predetermined processing and transporting can be performed. On one surface of the wafer a first fixing jig (3a) is fixed in close contact. After having performed a predetermined processing to the opposite surface of the wafer, a second fixing jig (3b) is fixed in close contact with the opposite surface of the wafer. The first fixing jig (3a) is removed and the wafer is handed over to the second fixing jig (3b). Each of the fixing jigs is made up of a jig main body (31), and a close contact layer (32) which is disposed on one surface thereof. The jig main body has a plurality of supporting projections (33) to support the close contact layer, and a side wall (34). The close contact layer is adhered to an end surface of the side wall to thereby define a partitioned space (35) enclosed by the side wall, between the close contact layer and the jig main body.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 31, 2008
    Date of Patent: September 10, 2013
    Assignees: Lintec Corporation, Shin-Etsu Polymer Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Takeshi Segawa, Kiyofumi Tanaka