Applied Materials, Inc. today revealed its latest innovations in through-silicon via (TSV) etch technology on its Applied Centura® Silvia(TM) Etch system.
A new plasma source boosts the silicon etch rate by over 40% to rapidly create high aspect ratio via structures with smooth, vertical profiles. This benchmark performance enables the Silvia system to bring the cost for via etch below $10 per wafer for the first time, helping chipmakers bring to market the advanced 3D-IC designs that will power future high-performance mobile devices.
"The new Silvia system is an example of Applied's focus on developing technology to bring down the cost of TSV fabrication - which has been a significant barrier to the widespread implementation of this important technology," said Ellie Yieh, vice president and general manager of Applied Material's Etch Business Unit. "The Silvia system's unmatched performance has been enthusiastically received by our customers and will help them bring TSV technology to high-volume manufacturing."
A new ultra-high-density plasma source increases the Silvia system's silicon etch rate by over 40% while maintaining the system's trademark precise profile control and virtually scallop-free sidewalls - which are critical to the subsequent deposition of high-quality liner and fill films. In addition, the remarkable speed and precision of the Silvia system makes it ideal for other cost-sensitive 3D-IC packaging applications such as "via reveal etch" that require rapid, highly uniform removal of bulk silicon from the back side of the wafer.
According to market researcher Gartner Dataquest, Applied Materials is ranked number one in both the TSV etch and wafer-level packaging markets based on worldwide revenue from system shipments in 2009. Applied has the only complete toolset for all TSV manufacturing flows, covering Etch, CVD, PVD, ECD, wafer surface preparation and CMP. With its unique ability to validate complete process flows at the company's Maydan Technology Center, Applied can mitigate risk and accelerate learning for its customers, assuring a smooth transition from R&D to volume production.