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12 November 2018

IHP and EVG co-developing low-temperature covalent wafer bonding for next-gen wireless and broadband communication devices

© Semiconductor Today Magazine / Juno PublishiPicture: Disco’s DAL7440 KABRA laser saw.

EV Group of St Florian, Austria – a supplier of wafer bonding and lithography equipment for semiconductor, micro-electro-mechanical systems (MEMS) and nanotechnology applications – says that IHP - Innovations for High Performance Microelectronics in Frankfurt (Oder) – a German government-funded research institute for silicon-based systems, highest-frequency integrated circuits and technologies for wireless and broadband communication – has purchased a ComBond automated high-vacuum wafer bonding system for use in developing next-generation wireless and broadband communication devices.

The ComBond features micron-level wafer-to-wafer alignment accuracy and room-temperature covalent bonding, which enables a wide variety of substrate and interconnect combinations for producing engineered substrates, next-generation MEMS and power devices, stacked solar cells, and high-performance logic and ‘beyond CMOS’ devices. The ability to conduct oxide-free aluminium-to-aluminium (Al-Al) direct bonding at low temperature is a unique capability of the ComBond platform, and is among the new bonding applications that IHP will explore with the system.

Covalent bonding enables wafer-level packaging and heterogeneous integration

Heterogeneous integration through wafer-level-packaging (WLP) – where multiple semiconductor components with different design nodes, sizes or materials are combined into a single package at the wafer level – is key to extending the semiconductor technology roadmap. Metal and hybrid wafer bonding are key process technologies for WLP and heterogeneous integration due to their ability to enable ultra-fine-pitch interconnections between the stacked devices or components. The continuous drive to higher performance and functionality of these integrated systems requires constant reductions in the dimensions and pitch of the interconnects – which in turn drives the need for tighter wafer bond alignment accuracy.

In addition, for certain WLP applications, Al-Al direct bonding is a promising new method of metal-based bonding due to aluminium’s low cost coupled with its high thermal and electrical conductivities. However, conventional Al-Al thermo-compression bonding requires high temperatures and bond forces to provide reliable bonding interfaces – making it incompatible with heterogeneous integration efforts.

“Combining different materials and device components into a single package has taken on greater importance in adding performance and value to electronic devices,” says EVG’s executive technology director Paul Lindner. “The EVG ComBond facilitates the bonding of nearly ‘anything on anything’ in wafer form. This provides our customers with a powerful solution for researching new material combinations for future semiconductor devices,” he adds. “Its micron-level alignment capability also makes the EVG ComBond uniquely suited for use in high-volume manufacturing of emerging heterogeneous integration device designs.”

EVG’s ComBond wafer activation technology and high-vacuum handling and processing allow the formation of covalent bonds at room or low temperature for fabricating engineered substrates and device structures. ComBond facilitates the bonding of heterogeneous materials with different lattice constants and coefficients of thermal expansion (CTE) as well as the formation of electrically conductive bond interfaces through a unique oxide-removal process. It maintains a high-vacuum and oxide-free environment throughout the entire bonding process, enabling low-temperature bonding of metals, such as aluminum, that re-oxidize quickly in ambient environments. Void-free and particle-free bond interfaces and excellent bond strength can be achieved for all material combinations, says EVG.

The firm is showcasing the ComBond – along with its complete suite of wafer bonding, lithography and resist processing solutions for advanced packaging and MEMS applications – in booth #A4241 at SEMICON Europa 2018 in Munich, Germany (13-16 November).

See related items:

EVG adds two EVG580 ComBond system configurations for university/R&D and high-volume manufacturing

EVG unveils covalent bonder for engineered substrate and power device production

Tags: EV Group

Visit: www.semiconeuropa.org

Visit: www.ihp-microelectronics.com

Visit: www.EVGroup.com

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