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UMC adopts Synopsys i-Virtual stepper system for photomask

Posted: 26 May 2005 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:i-virtual stepper system? photomask? inspection? dfm?

United Microelectronics Corp. (UMC) has adopted Synopsys Inc.'s i-Virtual Stepper system (i-VSS) for photomask inspection qualification. The i-VSS enhances mask inspection turnaround time and yield and is part of Synopsys' design for manufacturing (DFM) tool suite.

"The i-Virtual Stepper system is a welcome addition to our fab automation equipment as it helps simplify and automate our incoming mask inspection process through a Web-based architecture for wafer-level simulation and automated-defect dispositioning," said Simon Tarng, MES division director of UMC. "For 90nm manufacturing and below, simulation-based mask qualification has become increasingly important to ensure accurate qualification and reduced processing time for high-end photomasks," Tarng added.

i-VSS has a Web-based architecture designed to help leading semiconductor foundries such as UMC connect multiple fab sites to centralize the mask qualification process. With the I VSS software, all sites can collaborate to create a "virtual mask qualification portal." The Web-based system can also allow foundries to be closely linked with supplier mask shops for even greater streamlining.

"The foundry industry is shifting to simulation-based photomask qualification and automation," said Edmund Cheng, vice president of marketing for the Silicon Engineering Group at Synopsys. "Synopsys is committed to delivering best-in-class DFM solutions such as the i-VSS to companies like UMC to help ensure the manufacturability and quality of the most advanced semiconductor designs while achieving faster time to results."

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