Semiconductor Industry News, Trends, and Technology, and SEMI Standards Updates

Selecting or Designing a Yield Management System

Posted by Cimetrix on Jan 27, 2010 9:43:00 AM

by Sheethong Ho,
Solutions Architect

It is a natural tendency to think that Yield MaYield Managementnagement Integration is simply a data integration job that gathers related manufacturing and test data into a Yield Management System (such as dataPOWER, PDF), and thereafter the engineers and their Yield Management System live happy ever after.

For the fact that a production environment is never static and is evolving constantly makes the maintenance aspects of the Yield Management System a formidable challenge. It is fairly common to see a facility struggling to have its newly implemented Yield Management System keep up with new production needs. Any intentional or unintentional change in manufacturing data may break the loading of a data feed causing its yield analysis capabilities render useless.

The following are some of the key considerations when designing or selecting a solution for the implementation of a Yield Management System.

  1. How flexible is the solution in adapting to changing needs in the manufacturing environment? For instance, a new foundry plant is providing the assembly testing that feeds an existing data source for the Yield Management System. However, its test data does not comply with the expected format and could not be processed and loaded. What will be the cost and effort associated with fixing the assembly test data feed?
  2. How easy is it to manage and administrate the system? Anyone tasked to manage and maintain the data processing and data feed for the Yield Management System will experience a substantial amount of time investigating why a certain data failed to load. Hence, the question: does the solution provide good error reporting and handling? When the system administrator is approached by the yield engineer on a certain high priority lot not appearing in the Yield Management System – what tools are available to help diagnose the problem or to track down the missing lot? Will the system provide any further means to answer these questions:
    • Did the test data for the lot make it to the Yield Management system? Perhaps the lot has not even been tested or data was not made available to the system.
    • What is the cause for the failure? A typical failure is the missing Meta (e.g. Wafer Map Configuration) data that is required for the loading. (Usually the Process Engineers are responsible in keeping the Meta data updated)
    • How the error could be eradicated and the data loading be resumed. What tools are provided to facilitate such activities?
  3. Does the system provide critical alarms and warnings ahead of time such that problems are not identified only when data are discovered to be missing or incorrect during yield analysis? These alarms and warning could also include system resources such as storage space and CPU usage that could affect the processing and loading of yield related data.

In considering a solution for Yield Management System integration, perhaps more than simply concerning about getting the data accurately into the system, the ease of system maintenance is equally important.

Contact Cimetrix Global Services to discover Cimetrix can help with your Yield Management System implementation and integration.

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Topics: Data Collection, Global Services, Yield Data Management, Data Management

New Year, New Operating System

Posted by Cimetrix on Jan 6, 2010 10:25:00 AM

by Brent Forsgren,
EFA Practice Manager

It is the start of a new year, thank goodness! I wonder what is in store for my Global Services team this year. Last year was a tough year for the semiconductor market, but early indications and market experts are saying that 2010 should be much better than 2009.

On top of the market’s expected upward turn, Microsoft released Windows 7 in late 2009 to replace their not so popular Windows Vista. I expect that a significant portion of our customer’s equipment sales this year will be of existing technology and software. But for our customers that will be developing and selling new tools and software, will you jump to Windows 7 or will you wait for it to prove itself in the market place? Additionally, if you switch to Windows 7 will you also make the jump to a 64-bit architecture or will you stay with the aging 32-bit architecture?

We welcome your comments and feedback! I would love to hear your thoughts and plans.  Please comment below or email me at brent.forsgren@cimetrix.com.

Topics: Customer Service, Doing Business with Cimetrix, Product Information, Global Services, Windows 7, Microsoft

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