LONDON – Eric Meurice, CEO of lithography equipment supplier ASML Holding NV (Veldhoven, The Netherlands), has provided background on the roll out of its next generation extreme ultra violet (EUV) lithography machines and the throughputs customers can expect.
EUV lithography, considered by most of the industry as necessary to allow continued miniaturization of circuits, has been in development for nearly a decade and is still plagued by low power light sources that prevent machines reaching benchmark wafer throughputs in excess of 100 wafers per hour.
Meurice, speaking on a conference call with financial analysts held to discuss the company's somewhat tepid second quarter financial results, provided more EUV information than previously as the company gets close to shipping its NXE:3300 commercial EUV machine. The roll out of the first 11 "process development" machines, capable of handling 300-mm diameter wafers is now expected to be a 2013 event.
While in the short-term ASML is not promising much by way of throughput, possibly as little as 30 wafers per hour by the end of this year Meurice said there is now a roadmap to a throughput of 70 wafers per hour in 2014 and 125 wafers per hour in 2016. As and when customers call for 450-mm capable machines that should provide ASML with about a 10 percent adder on the sales price, Meurice said.
ASML has 11 of the NXE:3300 machines on order but these are now likely to be delivered to customers in 2013, Meurice said. The final integration of the first NXE:3300 at ASML is expected in October or November he added. The NXE:3300 systems shipping in 2013 will only be used for developing manufacturing process technologies, Meurice said but will still result in 800 million euro (about $980 million) of revenue for ASML in 2013.