Laser systems for wafer serialization, marking and scribing

Semiconductor wafer processing typically requires serialization, patterning and roughening operations. And picking the correct laser system for these operations can be complex once you consider all the relevant process variables—such as substrate type, wafer diameter, feature size, slag tolerances, debris volume, throughput and clean room protocols.

Whether marking or cutting wafers, lasers bring distinct advantages and cost savings to semiconductor manufacturing. The non-contact and low-residual processes are necessary in marking everything from blank silicon wafers to completed, packaged devices.

CMS Laser’s wafer processing systems offer a wide range of solutions including serialization for traceability, scribing and lapping. Our laser systems can process the full range of semiconductor substrates and coatings—include silicon, sapphire, lithium tantalate, silicon carbide, III-V semiconductors, II-VI semiconductors, and photo resists.

Our engineers understand the nuances of wafer handling, throughput and clean room requirements. They have experience with a wide variety of substrate types—silicon, sapphire, GaAS, InP, SiGe and more.

We can tailor turnkey laser systems to your application requirements, accounting for geometric, dimensional, line width and slag tolerances.

Laser Options For Wafer Systems

The CO2 Laser System offers an economical solution suitable for serialization and dicing. They are designed for use in higher class clean rooms where larger geometries and line widths (125 micron) are acceptable and slag is not a major concern. One benefit of the CO2 system is that allows for deeper scribe lines with a single pass as compared to other lasers. The CMS Laser CO2 systems require no laser maintenance for increased uptime.

Fiber Laser Systems provide solutions where tighter tolerances are required than CO2 lasers can offer. These systems have processing capabilities in the 20-30 micron range for improved line width, geometry size, and improved slag tolerances. They also produce less particulate than the CO2 systems, making them acceptable for standard fabrication clean rooms in the Class 100 range.

These systems also provide deeper scribe lines at lower power than the 532, 355, and 266 systems, should scribing and lapping be desired. In addition, the fiber laser system is a “no laser maintenance” solution.

The 532 UV Laser System offers reduced line widths in the 15 micron range, as well as deeper etch capabilities at lower power than the 355 and 266 UV systems.

The 355 and 266 UV Laser Systems offer a superior solution when process tolerances are the determining factor. It allows geometries and line widths below 10 microns, and processes with minimal to no slag. These systems also reduce particulate generation allowing for use in today’s most stringent clean room protocols.

System Examples

  • The UV Laser System (355nm or 266nm) is an excellent solution when process tolerances or small features are the most important deciding factor. A UV system with galvanometers and a reasonable scan field size, etches with minimal melting and microns wide line widths. This system also reduces particulate generation, especially when marking inside transparent substrates, such that it is acceptable for today’s most stringent clean room protocol.
  • The 532nm Laser System has similar benefits of the UV laser systems on some substrates, but with larger line widths and reduced cost.
  • The Fiber Laser System (1064nm) works well with opaque substrates and larger feature sizes. With the proper laser, technique, and settings, “soft” marks (no debris) on silicon substrates are possible.
  • The CO2 Laser System offers an economical solution suitable for serialization when larger line widths are acceptable and slag is not a major concern.
  • The Femotsecond Laser System is the system of choice when true “cold marking” is required. This system is the most costly, but etchings have no raised edges or melting. Because of non-linear absorption, longer wavelengths (1040nm and 520nm) can mark transparent substrates both externally and internally. These lasers generally have high repetition frequencies that allow for faster processing.


Cassette to Cassette Robotic Operation with Pre-aligner

Laser Marking System for Wafers using a Robot


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