TOKYO Fujitsu Ltd. has begun prototype production of chips in its 90-nanometer (0.09-micron) process technology at its Akiruno Technology Center, and plans to introduce the process for commercial production in the next fiscal year, which begins Monday (April 1).
Fujitsu has centralized all aspects of its 90-nm process development in Akiruno, from basic research and product planning through design and pilot production. "We are one of the top runners who has already entered into 90-nm pilot production," said Toshihiko Ono, group executive vice president of Fujitsu's Electronic Device Group.
Fujitsu plans to invest about $682 million in Akiruno over a five-year period ending in 2005. The pilot production line employs 200-mm wafers and will have the capacity to process 5,000 wafers per month at full operation.
R&D engineers formerly scattered at Fujitsu's various facilities have been assembled at Akiruno, drawn from the company's Atsugi Technical Center for basic research, from Kawasaki's research and manufacturing facilities for product planning and design, and from Mie for pilot production.
The pilot line employs a standard mechanical interface, in which wafers are kept inside of pods that move throughout the facility. The pods at Akiruno are rated at class 0.1 cleanness, and the area outside the pods is rated at class 1,000 cleanliness. With the modular contamination control method, Fujitsu was able to make its clean room operational in four months after the start of construction, down from the conventional six-month time frame, the company said. .
Fujitsu's 90-nm process employs a Canon Inc. ArF scanner, phase-shift technology and new resist materials.