Introduction to Assembly Equipment - 1988 Edition

Summary : Assembly equipment consists of those types of equipment used to sep­arate the completed wafer into its individual dice and to assemble each die into its own package. The assembly equipment market comprises roughly 11% of the total equipment market for all semiconductor manufacturing. Exact percen­tages of the total segment and its subsegments will be found in the database sections of each of the following chapters.

Annexure :

In the 1980's, assembly equipment suppliers have been under excep­tional pressure by semiconductor manufacturers to increase throughput, to automate and to increase the flexibility of ·each system. This pres­sure comes about because assembly equipment is critical in the eco­nomics of the factory. By the time a wafer arrives at assembly, some 80-90% of its value has already been invested. To lose a large number of wafers or dice at this point would be very costly. Fortunately, the yield in assembly has been about 92% in the past. But with the advent of automation new issues arose. User's in this timeframe often speak of a 'lights-out factory' or of a 'peopleless assembly'. The spiralling costs of assembly as well as unrest in third world nations such as the Philli­pines where much of the world's assembly is done, had manufacturers looking for more economical approaches to assembly. There was even talk of bringing assembly back 'onshore'. The pressure to return as­sembly onshore is also a function of the increase in A SICS. Because ASICS are low volume devices, they require fast turnaround. ASICS also place a premium on demand for new types of packaging equipment as the number of device types increase.

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