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Planning for Future Unknowns in Semiconductor Manufacturing

October 18, 2017

Planning for Future Unknowns in Semiconductor Manufacturing

Critical Manufacturing recently hosted a webinar on ‘Planning for Future Unknowns in Semiconductor Manufacturing’. The session was introduced by Julie Fraser, Principal of Iyno Advisors Inc and co-presented by Scott Van Etten, Program Manager for the High Performance NAND Test Laboratory of the itt Chip Semiconductor Institute at Unisinos in Brazil.

With a growing emphasis on innovation, MES must prepare for future compatibility with emerging technologies to ensure they are configurable, personalised and adaptable to future-proof businesses. The webinar covered these points, giving tactful solutions by our experts on how I4.0 can help companies move forward seamlessly in Semiconductor Manufacturing.

Challenges that the Semiconductor industry faces

“As pioneers in industry 3.0, the Semiconductor industry has led the way, and as most pioneers, it’s hard to step into the next big revolution.”

An old MES solution will limit a company’s ability to be competitive today and into the future. Increasing overheads for maintenance will be accompanied by a growing inability to adopt new technology choices that can increase productivity, reduce costs and improve quality.

Scott explains that the total semiconductor sales this year globally are projected to go beyond 350 billion US dollars, spread across different sectors all with different requirements. This only heightens the likelihood of challenges that MES systems face as they struggle to support OEM’s.

Julie goes to comment further, that we can expect such challenges as it’s difficult to rebuild complex code one building block at a time, even more-so when some code of a system may not even be visible nor understandable for some companies.

So, how can Industry 4.0 help?

With I4.0 you can expect to;

Lower the cost of small-runs

Improve your yield, reliability and quality

Speed up your business process

Have greater visibility across the value chain

Have greater agility to respond more quickly

Have your own new approach for the new economy

Julie explains that it goes beyond reports, and moves to acquiring data from a visual real-time status that will enable your company to make strategic decisions seamlessly.

“The scalability of this kind of a system is dramatically different from what we knew and what most companies use today.”

There is no right or wrong migration strategy and the process selected is highly dependent on choosing one that fits the needs of the plant.

I4.0 can mine data more effectively to get more meaningful information, as a result of horizontal integration, which can;

Accelerate product and improvement cycles

Free up working capital

Reduce cycle time of the overall value chain

Boost the company’s bottom line

Planning for the future

The Semiconductor industry was probably one of the first to embrace the idea of MES. The problem is that some of these systems still exist and are so embedded into the production process, that changing them is a complex task.

The frequency at which data is being collected is growing exponentially and we need to be able to deal with evolutionary and revolutionary advances. Thus, it is important that we have the tools in place to work with large amounts of data, and have an MES that’s flexible and can easily accommodate to the evolving complexity of supply chains. MES must support the future shop-floor marketplace. But it must also support the transition from a logically centralized system. Therefore, the huge potential benefits Industry 4.0 offers are enormous and may well be the catalyst to change.

To listen to the full webinar, follow this link


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MES to Standardize Wafer Epitaxial Operations. GS-EPI builds a foundation for growth.
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