“In retrospect, the decision to launch this Competence Center five years ago has been very fruitful and future-oriented”, says ERS Managing Director Klemens Reitinger. Though the technology has made significant progress, some fundamental issues persist – in particular those related to the proper separation of the reconstituted wafer from its temporary carrier as well as to workpiece warpage. “To both problems, we are offering solutions that can be tested in our Competence Center. Most of these solutions are based on our protected intellectual property”, Reitinger explains.
ERS observed that since 2015 the second wave of the Advanced Packaging Technology Expansion started to gain traction, triggering a significant increase in the number of market participants. OSATs (Outsourced Semiconductor Assembly and Test), material manufacturers, equipment vendors and research institutes alike are intensifying their activities in the area of embedded Wafer Level BGA (eWLB). Also, eWLB package manufacturing processes have evolved since the time the Competence Center has opened its doors. A diversity of materials and processes has unfolded. Metal, glass, silicon, diverse new potting compounds have entered the scene along with new process concepts like Chip First or RDL First. At the same time, the variety of end products and applications leveraging Advanced Packaging has grown substantially: Extremely slim smartphones, smart watches, IoT devices and even automotive products such as radar sensors are manufactured using Advanced Packaging, to name just a few examples.
The Competence Center is a significant contribution to ERS’ appeal as a leading vendor of manufacturing and development equipment. Mr. Reitinger describes the formula for success: “Strict confidentiality, no fees. Thus, we can remain open for the technological progress and can deliver results quickly and unbureaucratically.” ERS’ reward: “Since our customers know they can trust us, we are aware of new technology trends at a very early stage. This enables us to integrate our solutions into products and manufacturing equipment more quickly.”
ERS electronic GmbH, based in Germering near Munich, has been producing innovative thermal test solutions for the semiconductor industry for 45 years. The company has gained an outstanding reputation in the sector, notably with its fast and accurate thermal chuck systems for test temperatures ranging from -65°C to +500°C for analytical, parameter-related and manufacturing tests. Today, thermal chuck systems developed by ERS in its product families AC3, AirCool©, AirCool© plus and PowerSense© are an integral component in all larger-sized wafer probers right across the chip industry.
Brand+Image, Timothy K. Goebel