Lower the cost of equipment procurement and production
Fast-changing market conditions and shorter IC product life cycles continue to make increasing demands on the speed for equipment procurement. New equipment must be delivered quickly and introduced into a highly automated production environment flawlessly. Unfortunately, the problem is made more difficult with evolving SECS/GEM automation standards, unique fab manufacturing methods, and rapidly changing equipment designs.
Many equipment suppliers have determined that high-quality test programs are essential to delivering production-ready equipment. Good testing speeds sign-off and increases equipment reliability, ultimately lowering the overall cost of ownership for the factory and increasing margins for the equipment supplier. Semiconductor fabs and assembly plants also test incoming equipment to ensure factory readiness. Such testing has shown to lower the cost of equipment procurement and production.
Equipment suppliers and factory owners use one or more of PEER Group’s test applications to implement their test programs. Each application has specific capabilities depending upon the goals of the user and they’re often used in combination. Because of time pressure or lack of qualified engineers, some companies leverage PEER Group’s test services to perform all or portions of their equipment QA programs.
PEER Group understands the value of an excellent semiconductor automation quality assurance (QA) testing program from both the fab and OEM perspectives. Our engineers have tested hundreds of equipment models for fabs. We have also developed and tested complete automation solutions for several dozen equipment models. This equipment goes through automation acceptance quickly and runs reliably in the fab.
Our QA consultants will help you evaluate current testing methods, set quality goals, and develop an overall quality strategy. The process—which typically lasts five days—can be adapted to your specific needs. We then provide you with a document containing a quality assurance assessment, gap analysis, and an action plan to implement an improved QA process. OEMs report lower start-up costs, faster fab sign-off, and higher equipment reliability.
Semiconductor equipment automation software testing
Because our engineers are so familiar with many of the world's fabs and their automation requirements, as well as the CCS Product Suite and PEER FACTORY® Acceptance Tester (PFAT™) products, some fabs and OEMs prefer to outsource their automation quality assurance testing to PEER Group. Our engineers review the fab's specifications, perform the appropriate standards tests and dynamic tests, analyze the results, and provide recommendations to correct a tool's automation deficiencies. OEMs that do not test their equipment frequently often find it more cost effective to rely upon PEER Group's test specialists for comprehensive testing so their software engineers can focus on product enhancements. PEER Group can also implement a very successful, formal QA and testing process called Automation Capabilities Management (ACM) for those fabs that desire the highest quality automation interfaces for their incoming equipment.