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Browse Prior Art Database

Breakaway Robot Finder

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000121348D
Original Publication Date: 1991-Aug-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2005-Apr-03
Document File: 3 page(s) / 112K

Publishing Venue

IBM

Related People

Bullard, SH: AUTHOR [+3]

Abstract

This article concerns a device which is intended to decrease the potential for semiconductor wafer damage caused by equipment malfunction. This device replaces existing end of arm tooling on automatic wafer-handling equipment. The device is called a breakaway finger, and the design allows the finger to separate due to unexpected contact with a semiconductor wafer without causing damage to the semiconductor wafer.

This text was extracted from an ASCII text file.
This is the abbreviated version, containing approximately 90% of the total text.

Breakaway Robot Finder

      This article concerns a device which is intended to
decrease the potential for semiconductor wafer damage caused by
equipment malfunction.  This device replaces existing end of arm
tooling on automatic wafer-handling equipment. The device is called a
breakaway finger, and the design allows the finger to separate due to
unexpected contact with a semiconductor wafer without causing damage
to the semiconductor wafer.

      Many automatic wafer-handling systems employ some type of
vacuum finger to pick up and transport wafers from one destination to
another.  This requires that the vacuum finger be inserted into a
wafer carrier as shown in Fig. 1.

      If an equipment malfunction should occur while the vacuum
finger is inserted into the carrier, multiple wafers could be
destroyed by movement of the finger in the path of the wafers.  This
occurrence is represented in Fig. 2.

      In order to minimize the potential for multiple wafer damage, a
breakaway joint has been added to the robot finger.  Various methods
to clamp the two parts of the finger could be used.  Mechanical or
magnetic clamping are two possibilities.  Another method, which is
shown in Fig. 3, uses vacuum to clamp the finger together.

      Independent of the clamping mechanism, the concept of the
design allows for the finger to breakaway if an applied force on the
finger exceeds a predetermined force, as illustrated in Fig. 4.

      An element of t...