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Micron Technology Optimizes Process Control With Applied Materials' E3 Equipment Control System
E3 is an integrated engineering system that allows sophisticated control strategies aimed at increasing product performance, raising product yield and improving quality.
Micron selected Applied Materials' E3 solution for advanced process control given its balance between cost & control flexibility. The selection followed a comprehensive evaluation of several commercial systems and took into account stakeholders preferences, functional features, cost of ownership (CoO) and return on investment (ROI) analysis.
Since the adoption of E3, Micron's engineering teams have enabled fault detection and classification (FDC) to predict and avoid unexpected equipment downtime and prevent product deviations, runtorun control (R2R) to adjust processing parameters in real time and equipment performance tracking (EPT) to identify factory bottlenecks to quantify process variability. With the statistical process control (SPC) module, Micron's 300mm facilities will further improve efficiency and product quality while reducing the CoO.
"We're extremely pleased to be able to work with a technology leader such as Micron in deploying the E3 system to optimize the efficiency of their worldwide fab assets," said Charlie Pappis, vice president and general manager of Applied Global Services. "By integrating what were previously standalone functions into a common framework, the E3 system has transformed equipment automation and control technology, which has historically been complex and expensive to implement and maintain."
Before running E3, Micron had been using a mix of inhouse and third party systems running different approaches on different platforms. Quality Management Systems are a key part of Micron's strategy to provide customers with superior product quality. With Applied Materials' assistance, Micron has been able to make a smooth transition to the E3 system, allowing it to achieve both significant process improvements and ongoing cost savings from increased operational efficiency.
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