Santa Clara, Calif.--Dec. 23, 1997--Chip Express Corp. (Santa Clara) announced the upgrading of its Quick laser micro-machining system for rapid personalization of gate array devices.
The upgrade course encompasses the improvement of throughput and the increase of accuracy. This upgrade will enable Chip Express to maintain its advantage of one day ASIC prototyping delivery even for deep-submicron devices.
The laser system performance was enhanced by doubling throughput so that a 0.35-m device with over 500,000 gates can be customized in just two hours. The laser light maximum frequency was increased to 50 kHz, implying that the laser machine is capable of completing about 50,000 cuts per second (compared to the previous performance of20,000 cuts per second) of the die links. The placement accuracy of the laser pulse was improved significantly to be less than 0.1 m. Also, the software operating system of the Quick laser micro-machining was updated to perform at 0.35 m and below.
At its Bunker Hill facility in Santa Clara, Chip Express operates five Quick laser micro-machining systems, three of which are currently running 0.35-m devices triple metal test chips. Working with Chartered Semiconductor Manufacturing (Singapore), Chip Express plans to offer the 0.35-m gate array product, the CX3000, to beta customers in early 1998.
The Quick System is used for fabricating LPGAs (Laser Programmable GateArrays). The base wafers are fabricated with all interconnection layers fully completed and a patented disconnect methodology is employed with the laser technique to selectively remove specific metalization points to personalize the arrays. Processing one die ata time, pre-defined links are disconnected by the laser system, whileno photolithography masks are required.
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