SYSTEMA specializes in supporting semiconductor manufacturers in achieving the IT capabilities necessary to address the needs of the complete semiconductor value chain― from wafering to front-end through to back-end assembly and test. For more than 25 years, SYSTEMA has developed and implemented solutions designed around the unique requirements of semiconductor manufacturers where rapidly changing market conditions and customer requirements drive them to constantly expand product offerings, focus on individualization and mass customization with “lot size one” options, and excel at just-in-time delivery.
SYSTEMA’s global footprint enables the highest level of support and collaboration with manufacturers to achieve their production optimization objectives.
Semiconductor Manufacturing Automation
The semiconductor shop floor is unique, it represents the most advanced technologies, process tools, and automation requirements in the world of manufacturing. SYSTEMA’s proven ability to deliver the highest quality consulting and automation solutions to the semiconductor industry is made possible by our global team of manufacturing automation experts, their industry expertise (many of our engineers have 20+ years of fab experience), and our customizable solution frameworks. Our solutions are concentrated in the areas of manufacturing systems integration, automation, data visualization, production optimization, and systems migration.
Systems & Equipment Integration
You can't control or optimize what you don't see. The integration of systems and equipment on the fab floor:
- eliminates data silos
- enables critical context information to support data-driven decision making
- provides a centralized environment to meet user access and use-case requirements for manufacturing operations management, automation, visualization, analytics, and optimizations
For semiconductor manufacturers, integration begins by implementing the foundation on which to build a scalable and sustainable infrastructure capable of accommodating changing product requirements, various fab floor equipment and IT systems, and multiple sites and/or production lines. Not only do our solutions follow SEMI standards, they often extend the capabilities of SEMI standards to provide additional data where SECS/GEM interfaces and/or data are insufficient or entirely absent.
From there, and often with the help of the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT), fab floor equipment can be integrated into and harmonized with the FDC, R2R, SPC, QMS, and other IT systems to enable automated data collection, automated production processes, product quality improvements, and insights into equipment utilization (OEE).
Automated Wafer & Chip Processing
Automation increases the value-added activities of operators and engineers. By reducing tedious, repetitive, and sometimes dangerous activities, operators and engineers are free to focus on more complex tasks.
Whether your fab is highly automated or is just beginning the digital transformation journey, opportunities for increasing levels of automation present themselves in a variety of ways. In the case of fabs with mostly manual or very little automation, the motivation may stem from traceability requirements or headaches associated with the management of spreadsheets and paper travelers. In other cases, selecting the correct reticle or management and selection of recipes may be prompting the pursuit of some additional automation capabilities. From the implementation of manufacturing execution systems to event-driven dispatching to carrier and material tracking systems to automating the creation of test wafer kits, SYSTEMA holds deep knowledge in all areas of automated wafer and chip processing.
Maximize Every Aspect of Production
Balancing production and product development in the same environment poses a variety of challenges. Equipment capacity and utilization must be maximized, fast ramp-up and fast scale must be achieved along with high yields while simultaneously improving and developing new and existing processes and products.
Separating the best from the rest in semiconductor manufacturing often comes down to the manufacturer’s ability to fully maximize every aspect of production. With complex products, process steps numbering upwards of a thousand, reentrant processes, and little margin for error, optimizations provide significant competitive advantages. This is where a manufacturing execution system becomes critical and equipment integration and automation, automated WIP management solutions, automated recipe management, basic and advanced reporting capabilities, automated material handling systems, and custom automation solutions must be carefully evaluated.
Full Transparency into Operations
Full transparency into fab operations is critical for continuous improvement, traceability, production optimization, and quality management. Access to global production data in real-time is an absolute game-changer as optimization efforts transform from a basis in “gut instinct” to data-driven decisions based on access to real-time, event-driven dispatch lists, capabilities to simulate and evaluate proposed changes to production processes before implementation, and the ability to quickly identify and resolve issues with material, equipment, systems, or processes.
Semiconductor manufacturing is one of the industrial forerunners in producing terabytes of production data. These data provide important context for dashboards that allow for enhanced visualization of KPIs related to equipment, lots, WIP, and more. Dashboards for monitoring and management of manufacturing IT systems unveil critical details regarding systems and equipment states, communications, and availability. These capabilities are among the most requested and the most critical to identify opportunities for production optimizations.
Migration of Legacy Systems
Eliminate paper, electronic spreadsheets, and the silos of information in the fab. Legacy manufacturing execution systems and other legacy IT applications serve their purpose on the fab floor but, eventually, they will no longer be capable of fully meeting the demands and requirements of today’s manufacturing world and a modern solution will be required. “Hidden Factory” dynamics are common in established fabs where shadow systems, based on spreadsheets or prototypes, are not visible to central IT. These “hidden factory” or "shadow IT" systems are very difficult to maintain and use, involve very high technical costs of ownership (TCO), and risk. SYSTEMA has a reputation for making these prototypical applications more mature and refurbishing outdated solutions.
Executing the migration of a running system requires experience and skilled attention to ensure the running operations are not impacted and that, upon completion, the factory is positioned to truly capitalize on the promised benefits of the new solution. If your company is seriously considering a migration, SYSTEMA can advise on strategic end-to-end considerations as well as partner with you on the successful migration to a modern system. Our engineers have a rich history of extending, maintaining, and migrating legacy systems and are uniquely qualified to migrate IT systems within a live production environment.
At SYSTEMA, we implement "best of breed" solutions, identify and close functional gaps on the fab floor. We have been providing training, consulting, and successful implementation of smart manufacturing solutions for the semiconductor industry for more than 25 years. We continue to do so by implementing solutions and customizing functionality with end-users in mind and by providing the support, training, and services necessary to empower users to independently leverage the capabilities of their systems.