Veeco Develops Tools to Drive Down HBLED Costs
Veeco is working in partnership with Sandia National Laboratories and Philips Lumileds to drive down the cost of high-brightness LEDs by implementing process simulation tools and by improving temperature measurement and control methods to increase MOCVD yield. Veeco is working with Sandia to reduce the cost of ownership (COO) of the deposition equipment by, for example, using a heated flow flange, which reduces the consumption of the expensive precursors (ammonia, nitrogen, hydrogen, and the metal organics) by 40 percent. Two different types of pyrometers developed by Sandia and Veeco are being tested by Philips Lumileds to control the substrate temperature, which helps determine the color of the LED. If all works according to plan, the COO will be reduced by at least 75 percent by improving throughput, growth uniformity, yield, and temperature stabilization.
Veeco has also developed an advanced wafer carrier design offering a 14x4" configuration (i.e., holding 14 4-inch wafers, compared with the standard 12x4" wafer carrier) to increase the capacity, and revised pocket shaping, in which the wafer holders are contoured to increase temperature uniformity. The introduction of optimized pocket shaping has resulted in a within-wafer wavelength uniformity improvement of 24 percent. Consequently, the wafer yield for a 5-nm wavelength bin has increased from 82 to 92 percent. These changes represent a 24 percent reduction in the COO for Veeco's MOCVD equipment and will contribute to a significant lowering of manufacturing costs.
All of these features are being incorporated into Veeco's new MaxBright™ multireactor system.