- Applied said its new tool will help chipmakers polish wafers that are 200 millimeters (7.87 inches) wide
- The machines announced are designed for chips made from a material called silicon carbide
As per a report by Reuters, Applied Materials released two new tools aimed at improving the efficiency of making a new class of chips for electric vehicles. The machines announced are designed for chips made from a material called silicon carbide. Applied said its new tool will help chipmakers polish wafers that are 200 millimeters (7.87 inches) wide.
The report added that silicon carbide chips are difficult to manufacture because the material is very hard. They are bulk-manufactured on discs called “wafers” that are later sliced into individual chips. It added that wafers first must be polished perfectly smooth, or the resulting chips will have defects. As silicon carbide is so hard, chipmakers can polish only a relatively small wafer that is 150 millimeters (5.91 inches) wide without getting defects somewhere on the surface.
Sundar Ramamurthy, group vice president and general manager for an Applied group working to advance chipmaking technology for automotive chips, sensors and other devices said that to bring this to high volume manufacturing, one needs the entire wafer surface to be identical, so one can have predictable output across the wafer.