End-Point Control System for CMP Process


  • MP process control for STI
  • CMP process control for BPSG
  • Development of new processes
  • CMP process control for ILD with a polishing stop nitride-layer


  • CMP end-point detection in-situ and in real-time
  • Entire wafer surface measurement
  • Full system integration
  • Virtually maintenance-free.

Minimum Detectable Concentration

10 ppt

Process control advantages

Independent of process variables
• Down Force
• Slurry pH
• Deposition and diffusion variables
• Handles a very narrow process window
Handles a very narrow process window
• Actual decrease in window from 4-12 secs. to 2-4 secs.(2-4 nanometers) in BPSG Polish
In-situ and in real-time
• Not dependant on time delayed monitoring

Production advantages

  • Increased yield
  • Less need for measurement equals fewer man hours
  • Increased throughput and tool utilization
  • Reduced CMP rework and clustered measurement wait time
  • Reduce initial capital expenditures (i.e. metrology tools, CMP systems, etc.)
  • Reduced scrap


End-Point Control System for CMP Process

The M17 CMP process monitoring and control system is unique in its speed and precision. It allows continuous polishing without any measurement interruptions. The M17 measures in-situ, in real-time and stops precisely at the right stack, while being completely independent of any kind of removal rate variations.

What History Tells Us.
Existing methods that control CMP-processes are either based on simple timing, on frictional changes, on optical measurement of thickness or on measurement control in-line or off-line. All these methods need a relatively large process window. CMP processes depend on quite a large number of parameters, such as downward pressure, rotational speed of the platen and the carrier, relative rotational directions, kind and condition of the pad, slurry, temperature and much more. For STI CMP, for example, the above-mentioned parameters are changing. Such process also has a very small window. Therefore, the methods mentioned above are poorly suited or very time consuming.

M17 – How Simple a Great Solution Can Be.
The M17 system has been developed jointly by ECO PHYSICS and a leading-edge semiconductor company. The system was initially applied to monitor and control shallow trench isolation (STI) CMP, which must be stopped at the interface containing silicon nitride film. The control requirement is to clear out the oxide on top of all nitride film.

Unique: The Analyzer’s Response and Signal Sensitivity.
Our approach simply detects the nitride-containing polishing product with sub-ppb detection sensitivity and one-second response time, in-situ, in real-time – currently one of the fastest CMP end-point detection systems of all times.

All features have been developed to assure robust and safe operation within the production environment. The design of the system allows continuous operation with minimum maintenance (few hours a year), high user friendliness and guaranteed end-point capturing.

The Multifunctional Software.
The method measures the entire wafer, since the signal is averaged over the whole wafer surface. The slope of the signal is a function of the uniformity. The maximum signal depends on the N-containing area of the current layer. The M17 system has highly intelligent, flexible and user-friendly process control software, which provides reliable end-point detection for each and every kind of wafer.

M17 is a non-intrusive end-point detection system, which uses a proprietary and patented chemiluminescence technology to quickly and accurately determine CMP end-point in-situ and in real-time. M17 can optimize any process that incorporates a nitride containing layer, i.e. STI, BPSG, Cu using TaN barrier, etc. M17 is currently installed and controls polishers from a variety of manufacturers. M17 can be adapted to almost fit any CMP process tool.


Pick-up Modules (Probes)

several types, optimized to polisher-specific space situation

Park Position of Probe

vertical or sideways, depending on polisher type

Detection Method


Detection Limit

10 ppt

Rise Time (0 – 90 %)

0.5 sec


0.5 m2

Dimensions (H x W x D)

185 x 60 x 80 cm


200 kg

Supply Voltage

115 V/50-60 Hz or 230 V/50 Hz

Power Required

1.5 kVA maximum


direct Interfacing to polisher, SECS GEM II compatible

Temperature Range

10-35 °C

Preventive Maintenance

quarterly 4 to 8 hours


10’000 h


4 h


5 min





ECO PHYSICS reserves the right to change these specifications without notice.

Further information can be found in the Product Brochure

Download Brochure


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