As patterning dimensions decrease, die yield and performance become increasingly sensitive to smaller
amounts of process variations. To minimize variability, Process Control is applied to prevent excursions,
improve yield, decrease non-product runs, reduce cycle time due to rework, and reduce equipment
calibration and maintenance. Intel inline Process Control aims at rapid detection, classification, prediction,
and correction of problems and/or non-optimal performance during wafer processing. For efficient process
control, robust analysis is needed in order to monitor the process, detect, and predict the process behavior.
The paper will address Intel model based control and will focus on the various model based analysis and
control modules that Intel has developed, and deployed for different technology generations. With the rapid
increases in the number of analysis and control modules and the emerging need for integrating such
modules to allow sharing of data, applications and methods, there is a need to define standard interfaces for
such modules. This need motivated Intel to lead the development of SEMI E133; the Process Control
Systems (PCS) Standard that was approved on October 2003.
Process Control Systems (PCS) are becoming more crucial to the success of Integrated Circuit makers due to their direct impact on product quality, cost, and Fab output. The primary objective of PCS is to minimize variability by detecting and correcting non optimal performance. Current PCS implementations are considered disparate, where each PCS application is designed, deployed and supported separately. Each implementation targets a specific area of control such as equipment performance, wafer manufacturing, and process health monitoring. With Intel entering the nanometer technology era, tighter process specifications are required for higher yields and lower cost. This requires areas of control to be tightly coupled and integrated to achieve the optimal performance. This requirement can be achieved via consistent design and deployment of the integrated PCS. PCS integration will result in several benefits such as leveraging commonalities, avoiding redundancy, and facilitating sharing between implementations. This paper will address PCS implementations and focus on benefits and requirements of the integrated PCS. Intel integrated PCS Architecture will be then presented and its components will be briefly discussed. Finally, industry direction and efforts to standardize PCS interfaces that enable PCS integration will be presented.