Taiwan translated pages

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

Don’t Miss this Webinar – Industry 4.0, IIoT, and the Semiconductor Industry

Posted by Cimetrix on Sep 20, 2016 1:11:00 PM

Wikipedia graphic putting Industrie 4.0 in historical context (Figure 1)

webinar_image.png

If the attendance at the most recent SEMICON West and SEMICON Taiwan trade shows are any indication, the terms “Smart Manufacturing”, “Industry 4.0” and “IIoT” (Industrial Internet of Things) have indeed gained recognition and momentum as the rallying cry for the 4th industrial revolution (see figure 1).

In order to reach an even broader audience, the folks at Extension Media will host a free Webinar next week (September 27, 2016 at 1:00 p.m. EDT) with the provocative title “Is the Semiconductor Industry Ready for Industry 4.0 and the IIoT?”

Cimetrix’ VP of New Product Innovations, Alan Weber, is one of the presenters, and will make the case that the industry IS in fact ready for Industry 4.0 and the IIoT by virtue of the latest generations of SEMI Standards that support the kind of connectivity and control required by components of a Smart Manufacturing environment. He will not only show how the evolution of these standards has kept pace with the industry’s automation requirements for almost three decades, but also describe a number of concrete factory application examples that directly leverage the model-based aspects of the latest standards to achieve “plug-and-play” status across multiple process areas.

Sharing the agenda for the Webinar is Tom Sonderman, the VP and General Manager of Rudolph Technologies’ Software Business Unit. Tom has over 20 years of direct experience in the world-class Advanced Precision Manufacturing organizations of AMD and GLOBALFOUNDRIES before joining Rudolph, so there are few people in the world more qualified than he to talk about our industry’s automation capabilities.

The link for this webinar was published in Solid State Technology’s September 19 edition of “The Pulse,” but in case you missed it, you can register now by clicking below.

Register Now

This Webinar promises to be an exciting and informative session – don’t miss it!

Topics: Events, SEMICON, IoT

Realizing Industry 4.0 with SEMI Standards: Right Here and Now

Posted by Alan Weber: Vice President, New Product Innovations on May 6, 2016 1:00:00 PM

IoT1.png

Since the concept was first articulated in 2011 by a German government-supported program promoting deeper integration of manufacturing software and hardware across the production value chain, the term “Industry 4.0” has gained recognition and momentum as the rallying cry for the 4th industrial revolution (see left). Wikipedia  summarizes it like this: “Industry 4.0 facilitates the vision and execution of a ‘Smart Factory.’ Within the modular structured Smart Factories of Industry 4.0, cyber-physical systems monitor physical processes, create a virtual copy of the physical world, and make decentralized decisions. Over the Internet of Things, cyber-physical systems communicate and cooperate with each other and with humans in real-time…”

This definition may lead you to ask “What aspects of Industry 4.0 are truly revolutionary, and what technologies and tools are available today that would enable me to start building “Smart[er] Factories?” In this blog, I offer some potential answers to these questions that put the vision of Industry 4.0 within reach for automation practitioners familiar with the latest generation of SEMI Standards.  

IoT2.png

Semiconductor manufacturers have been collecting and using data from the equipment in their factories for decades. Throughout this period, device sizes and process windows have shrunk continuously according to Moore’s Law, and the SEMI Standards have evolved by necessity to support the insatiable demand for data exhibited by the process analysis and control applications that keep a modern fab running profitably (see left). The newest of these standards, the Equipment Data Acquisition suite (EDA, also known as “Interface A”), provides the power and flexibility to support a wide range of critical manufacturing applications and human users with ever-changing requirements; moreover, these standards can be deployed in a variety of system architectures without disturbing the “command and control” capabilities of existing factory systems.

“What does all this have to do with Industry 4.0?” To understand this, let’s look at the foundation of a “Smart Factory,” the collection of the many thousands of devices that might need to communicate over the so-called “Internet of Things.” 

We already see evidence that the availability of low-cost, low-power, networkable computing hardware will likely result in an explosion of “smart sensors” and other intelligent devices on the factory floor. However, as social scientists have observed over the millennia, groups of smart individuals don’t necessarily exhibit smart behavior in the aggregate, so what additional attributes must these devices possess to be good citizens of a collaborative, Industry 4.0 environment? How will these devices communicate effectively with one another? And what oversight will be required to ensure this communication achieves the ultimate manufacturing objectives?

As a starting point, I propose that each device, or manufacturing “thing,” at a minimum should be discoverable, autonomous, model-based, self-aware, communicative, and well-behaved. Depending on the role the device must play, it might also be self-monitoring, capable of defending itself (secure), and a consumer of data from other devices/systems as well as a provider. So defined, these devices would need a minimum of external monitoring and supervision (read “management overhead”) to perform their basic functions, but would rely on higher-level systems to provide specific objectives, instructions, and constraints (read “configuration, recipes, and limits”) for their operation in a given context and timeframe.

I realize that’s a lot to absorb at once, but now imagine that each of these devices could implement a subset of the services called for in the EDA standards, especially those defined in E120/E125/E164 (equipment modeling and standard metadata modeling), E132 (session management), and E134 (data collection management). Consider the collaboration among independent devices and systems this would enable…and ask yourself, how much closer to the vision of Industry 4.0 can you possibly get?

I hope the ideas above were useful…or at least thought-provoking. We’ll be developing this theme further in the coming months, but I wanted to use this blog as a conversation starter. We’d love to hear your feedback, so give us a call, or feel free to reach out to us.

Topics: SEMI, EDA, IoT

New Emerging Business and Technology Office

With the new year, comes a major new initiative for Cimetrix to grow the markets for its products.  The company used the transition to 300mm manufacturing to establish a leadership position for its current product portfolio in the semiconductor industry. However, the company is starting to have success expanding into adjacent vertical markets that includes disk drive, display, LED, and photovoltaic. The objective of this new initiative is for Cimetrix to leverage its experience, technology, and product portfolio gained in the advanced semiconductor manufacturing industry to expand the markets for Cimetrix products. We will be exploring new opportunities in our current adjacent markets as well as possible new markets such as SMT and electronic assembly.

Ranjan.jpeg

To head up this initiative, Ranjan Chatterjee has joined the company in the role of Vice President, Emerging Business and Technology Office. He will focus on extending and introducing Cimetrix’ portfolio of products into Industry 4.0 and Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) initiatives by interfacing manufacturing equipment with big data and analytics tools. The data generated by devices connected via Cimetrix products can also be enlisted to bolster another methodology often used with lean manufacturing—Six Sigma. With the improvements in cloud and big data tools and infrastructure, one can use these methodologies on data with much bigger volume, velocity, and variety. This enables process control and a lack of variation of products. Processes can be monitored and corrected in real-time instead of inspecting machines merely at completion, and eventually this will help improve yields and reduce scrap. Specifically, manufacturers will need to establish a robust data infrastructure that works across the broader array of machines on the shop floor while breaking down protocol barriers so the machines can communicate effectively and in real time.

Manufacturers will also need to establish a bidirectional data flow so they are not only collecting information from equipment, but also pushing control back to the machines to optimize their usage. Manufacturers that can capture the right information, sift through it, and use it at the right time will be the ones that succeed.  Cimetrix intends to be a leader in enabling this vision. Ranjan’s decades of experience at Motorola and in the industry as a whole in software development, big data, cloud, process control, and lean manufacturing will enable Cimetrix to both adapt and develop products and partnerships to enable a robust ecosystem for a compelling solution.

Ranjan’s relationship with Cimetrix is not a new one as he is a former client. While at Motorola, Ranjan oversaw the development and deployment of a standards-based factory control system for SMT and assembly, which encompassed 24 factories around the world, and connected to over 20,000 pieces of equipment using the first generation of Cimetrix connectivity software. At that time, it was the leader in cell phone manufacturing and the largest purchaser of SMT equipment in the world. More recently, Ranjan has worked with companies developing and deploying systems using cloud technologies, big data analytics, and various modern technologies with a global software development team.

Ranjan is extremely excited to join the Cimetrix team as he sees many opportunities to leverage the latest cloud and big data analytics with Cimetrix core expertise and product portfolio into new markets for Cimetrix. He sees great potential for expanding Cimetrix in this new direction and we here at Cimetrix are looking forward to Ranjan leading the way.

If you are interested in discussing possible business opportunities and/or partnerships with Cimetrix with this new initiatives, please fill out our contact form to reach the Emerging Business and Technology Office.

Topics: Working at Cimetrix, Cimetrix Culture, Announcements, IoT

SEMICON Japan 2015 Spotlights IoT and its Effects on the Semiconductor Industry of the Future

December 16-18 in Tokyo, SEMI played host to SEMICON Japan that was co-located with the WORLD OF IOT, a special “show-within-a-show” dedicated to the Internet of Things usages that are propelling the next generation of microelectronic advances. SEMICON Japan is of note as Japan has the world’s largest installed fab capacity with more than 4.1 million 200mm equivalent wafers per month representing a high product mix.

Over 60,000 visitors attended the three-day event who met with nearly 800 exhibitors; attended forums, technical sessions, and networking events; and had the opportunity to see new innovations and technologies within the industry.

BF259A56-753B-4740-9EA6-A39558678E62.jpg

BCFE8557-5BF0-42EB-8E64-D01BACDB0552.jpg

CE1BF807-6A8F-4C7F-BD5B-2C6ED9AC0FA6.jpg

One highlight of the show was the Sustainable Manufacturing Pavilion. The pavilion focused on 200mm fab capacity where increased demand from IoT devices is anticipated. Revamping of the existing capacity and building cost-conscious capacity will be key to the sustainable growth of the industry. Sustainability in microelectronics manufacturing is quickly moving from a minor area of focus to a major consideration in business planning. Forward-thinking device makers, materials suppliers, and equipment manufacturers are all beginning to understand sustainable manufacturing makes economic sense for the future.

The pavilion offered many related sessions throughout SEMICON including the SEMI Technology Symposium Test Technologies for Automotive Semiconductors; the SEMI Technology Symposium on DFM in the Trends towards Fabless/Foundry Manufacturing and Alliances; the SEMI Technology Symposium on The Dreams and Reality of TSV/2.5D/3D Packaging; and a Sustainable Manufacturing and High Tech Facility Forum.

This year’s SEMICON Japan also featured a Manufacturing Innovation Pavilion that showcased inventive processes, equipment, manufacturing, components, and materials technologies that enable smarter and faster—yet cheaper—semiconductor devices to create our advancing society, industry, and life. The pavilion demonstrated that developing microelectronics technologies that will make the IoT possible requires continued innovation in semiconductor manufacturing equipment, materials, and components.

In conjunction with the Manufacturing Innovation Pavilion, SEMICON conducted a Semiconductor Executive Forum, a Lithography Business Forum, and a Manufacturing Innovation Forum to exchange ideas and share knowledge about the topics featured in the pavilion.

The WORLD OF IOT brought together leading global electronics and microelectronics companies whose innovations are driving the expansion of mobile technologies, cloud computing, and network-connected devices. Held in conjunction with SEMICON Japan, WORLD OF IOT was a "show-within-a-show". Exhibitors included such noteworthy companies as Tesla Motors, Toyota Motor Corporation, and Intel KK that demonstrated current projects and developing technologies. Executive forums and technical sessions were also offered everyday during the show.

Cimetrix was proud to be represented by our two distributors in Japan, Meidensha Corporation and Rorze Corporation, who both featured our SECS/GEM and EDA product lines. For Rorze, 2015 has been a significant year, the company celebrated its 30th anniversary. Stay tuned for my upcoming blog about its amazing anniversary celebration.

SEMICON Japan 2015 made a great end cap to the year as it focused so heavily on where the semiconductor industry is headed. Hopefully all the SEMICONs in 2016 will continue to be forward-looking as we here at Cimetrix are and remain focused on seeing how managing big data is becoming an ever more important issue within manufacturing. For more information on how EDA/Interface A is equipped to manage data acquisition in fabs, click here.

Topics: Semiconductor Industry, Interface A, EDA, SEMICON Japan, Data Management, IoT

Subscribe to Email Updates

Follow Me

Learn More About the
SEMI Standards

SECS/GEM

GEM 300

Interface A/EDA

PV2 (PVECI)