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This project is developing a metrology tool that will lead to higher reliability of diamond wires, which will increase yield and result in better utilization of the wire. It will also improve the quality control process during manufacturing of the diamond wires. This will lead to a lower cost of ownership for diamond wires, which are used during the wafering process of silicon and are becoming an increasing share in the wire saw market.
The project team will develop sensor technology for diamond wires that is able to detect wire wear in real time, which will effectively prevent wire breakage during wafering. A prototype of the sensor will be developed and integrated into a commercial diamond wire cutting tool.
This project will allow diamond wire manufacturers to control the plating process inline as opposed to spot checking and monitor the outgoing quality of finished diamond wire spools. Silicon wafer manufacturers will be able to inspect incoming diamond wire spools for defects, monitor the amount of wear during sawing to prevent failure, and increase wafer production yield by avoiding damage of the ingot during the cutting cycle caused by wire breakage.