FormFactor Reaches Reliability Milestone with TakumiTM Parametric Probe Card
August 11, 2009
Parametric test technology still in service after more than 15M contact cycles
LIVERMORE, Calif. – August 11, 2009 – FormFactor, Inc. (Nasdaq: FORM) today announced it has reached a new reliability milestone for its TakumiTM wafer probe card—an advanced probing solution used by IC manufacturers for end-of-line and in-line parametric testing. Several Takumi cards in production use for over two years at Elpida Memory, Inc. have performed between 15 and 16 million contact cycles (or touch downs) on silicon wafers, delivering product durability and reliability unmatched by traditional parametric probing technologies.
“The Takumi probing technology is remarkably reliable and stable,” stated Masao Shimizu, Fab Process Group Engineer, Elpida Memory. “With the confidence we have in Takumi, we have reduced the need to retest significantly and virtually eliminated probe card-related fail data.”
Takumi is now in use at seven of the top 10 (by revenue) integrated device manufacturers (IDMs). Takumi extends FormFactor’s advanced probing technology further into the front end of the semiconductor manufacturing process—giving IC manufacturers earlier insight into opportunities to validate their designs, verify process performance and achieve higher yields.
“The use of wafer probing for parametric test plays an important role in assuring the quality of our customers’ manufacturing processes and the durability and accuracy of our Takumi parametric products are proving to be very valuable,” stated Bruce Bolliger, VP and GM of FormFactor’s SoC product business unit. “Our Takumi products not only enable us to make progress on today’s test challenges and align with the next-generation requirements of our customers’ test roadmaps, but also deliver to our customers a clear path for shrinking the test pads on their wafers to allow more room for patterning devices. ”
As process margins in semiconductor manufacturing continue to shrink with scaling design rules, the need to minimize deviations in device and process performance becomes ever-greater. Parametric testing on product wafers with FormFactor’s Takumi parametric probe cards provides rapid, cost-effective parametric measurements that enable IC manufacturers to quickly identify the source of process problems and minimize their impact on production yields. Takumi allows low-current measurements down to the femtoampere-level**, enabling its use for a wide variety of parametric test applications.
Takumi probe cards incorporate FormFactor’s proven 3-D MEMS-based MicroSpring® contact technology, which in addition to its extremely long-life, provides excellent contact precision to support test pad sizes as small as 30×30 microns—enabling its use for leading-edge parametric test applications. Since the test pads that are required for wafer probing are built into the scribe lines that separate each device on a wafer, wafer probe card technology must be sufficiently scalable to make robust and repeatable contact with smaller test pads without damaging adjacent die. The scalability of FormFactor’s MicroSpring technology allows IC manufacturers to narrow their scribe lines and increase the number of die that can be produced per wafer.
** Editor’s Note: A femtoampere is 10-15 amperes or 0.000000000000001 amperes.
Statements in this press release that are not strictly historical in nature are forward-looking statements within the meaning of the federal securities laws, including statements regarding our products and solutions, demand for our products and future growth. These forward-looking statements are based on current information and expectations that are inherently subject to change and involve a number of risks and uncertainties. Actual events or results might differ materially from those in any forward-looking statement due to various factors, including, but not limited to: the ability of the company’s Takumi parametric products to give IC manufacturers earlier insight into opportunities to validate their designs, verify process performance and achieve higher yields, to align with the next-generation requirements of the company’s customers’ test roadmaps, and to deliver to customers a clear path for shrinking the test pads on their wafers to allow more room for patterning devices; the relative scalability of FormFactor’s MicroSpring technology and the ability of the technology to allow IC manufacturers to narrow their scribe lines and increase the number of die that can be produced per wafer; and ability of the Takumi parametric product to consistently and reliably enable low-current measurements down to the femtoampere-level for a wide variety of parametric test applications. Additional information concerning factors that could cause actual events or results to differ materially from those in any forward-looking statement is contained in the company’s Form 10-K for the fiscal year ended December 27, 2008 and Form 10-Q for the fiscal quarter ended March 28, 2009 as filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”), and subsequent SEC filings. Copies of the company’s SEC filings are available at http://investors.formfactor.com/edgar.cfm. The company assumes no obligation to update the information in this press release, to revise any forward-looking statements or to update the reasons actual results could differ materially from those anticipated in forward-looking statements.