Coupling and Related Ergonomic Issues for Manual Handling of 300 mm Front Opening Unified Pods, FOUPs

Hubbard, James E.
(University of Wisconsin-Stout)

300mm Front Opening Unified Pods (FOUPs) are manually handled during the production of silicon wafer semiconductor products. A study was conducted to investigate the appropriateness of using a pressure sensing device along with traditional ergonomic assessment tools during an analysis of FOUP handles. Six different handle options were tested using a pressure sensing device for grip pressure concurrent with ergonomic assessment for upper extremity positions at anthropometric extremes. While recording the anatomic body positions with the ergonomic tools, the pressure mapping device revealed counterintuitive findings. The vertically oriented handles displayed higher average contact pressure readings than the horizontally oriented handles. Other readings showed relationships correlating higher grip pressures with larger surface areas. The results of the study suggest that pressure sensing equipment may someday be used to enhance ergonomic assessments.

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