LOT Vacuum is planning to develop dry vacuum pump technology for atomic layer deposition (ALD) equipment, which is being used more and more in advanced semiconductor process nodes.
The technology is aimed at application in the latest memory chip processes, sources said.
The company already supplies chemical vapor deposition (CVD) equipment to memory chip makers.
LOT Vacuum was part of a government-backed project to develop ALD technology, sources said.
Wafer fabrication requires vacuumed environment as the wafers may be contaminated by particles in the air.
Vacuum pumps are used for this reason for deposition and etching processes.
The deposition of chemical vapors has been the standard for mass production as they deposit on the wafer surface well and it is convenient.
ALD deposits multiple layers that are atomic in thickness. The equipment is slower than CVD but it can create thinner layers on the wafer.
Most process nodes at 10nm or under are quickly converting to the use of ALD instead of CVD.