A New Parts Cleaning Process for Porous Materials Used In Semiconductor Manufacturing Equipment

Makin, John; Fritz , Rob
(Ebara Technologies Inc , Sacramento, CA)

Semiconductor and microelectronics manufacturing companies are exploring ways to minimize the hazardous waste generated, decrease consumable usage while implementing cost saving measures. ThermaGas® is a revolutionary parts cleaning process developed by ASC²T (Advanced Semiconductor Cleaning Technology) that replaces the current industry wide practice of bead-blasting and/or chemical etching of ceramic, graphite and porous type parts to remove contamination so they may be re-used in various production tools. The process utilizes a new “Dry” technology that incorporates reactive gases, temperature and vacuum technologies to remove the contamination while producing a small fraction of the waste generated by today’s standard practices of cleaning or disposal. Not only does this process reduce the magnitude of the waste stream, it also is a non-contact technology that does not mechanically deform the parts like bead-blasting and chemical etching leading to many more recycling turns for each part. The new processing technology also allows the cleaning of previously un-cleanable parts either due to economic justification or the sensitivity of the parts to the current cleaning processes. Typical area of productions in which parts can use this technology include: Ion-Implant, EPI, CVD, PVD, RF & IR thermal, Molecular Beam Epitaxy, Flat Panel Display, Solar Cell Panel fabrication, Etch, Si Nitride, MOCVD, MBE, SIMOX, as well as other processes.

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