ExSolve wafer TEM prep from FEI enables semiconductor and data storage manufacturers to obtain more information for process verification.
ExSolve is designed to offer an automated, high-throughput sample preparation workflow for transmission electron microscopy (TEM) analysis.
It is claimed to reduce the cost and increase the speed of sample preparation, providing semiconductor and data storage manufacturers with quick and easy access to the data they need to verify and monitor process performance.
The product can prepare site-specific TEM lamella, sampling many sites per wafer in a fully-automated process inside the fab and giving semiconductor manufacturers more information than conventional approaches, while reducing the capital cost of sample preparation by up to 70%.
The automated, high-throughput sample preparation system can prepare site-specific, 20nm thick lamellae on whole wafers up to 300mm in diameter.
It is part of a fast, complete workflow that includes TEMLink, and the Metrios TEM. ExSolve includes FOUP handling and is designed to be located in the fab near the manufacturing line.
WTP workflow addresses the needs of customers requiring automated, high-throughput sampling at advanced technology nodes. It complements the capabilities of FEI’s Helios NanoLab DualBeam 1200AT, which provides more flexible, operator-directed, sample preparation methods, along with additional capabilities such as high-resolution scanning electron microscopy (SEM) imaging and analysis.
“TEM analysis is the only method that allows semiconductor manufacturers to fully characterise, understand and control their advanced manufacturing processes, such as three-dimensional and multi-gate devices, at the 20nm node and smaller.
“Until now, most sample preparation for TEM analysis has used slow, manual processes that break the wafer into multiple hard-to-track and hard-to-handle pieces,” said Rudy Kellner, vice president and general manager of the Industry Group at FEI.
“ExSolve fully automates lamella creation from whole wafers, eliminating most of the manual sample handling and data tracking overhead. We expect ExSolve to transform the way process engineers think about process data. Instead of trying to make the most of a minimal sampling plan, they can now have fast, inexpensive access to all the data they need for thorough process verification,” Kellner added.