SmartFactory Equipment Automation is an automation design and control framework, providing equipment integration and logic orchestration through run-time execution of automation scenarios. Factories continuously seek out opportunities to increase productivity, reduce errors and scrap losses, and optimize costs. Equipment Automation (EA) enables logical execution of expert defined sequences to address asset utilization, process sequence and recipe validation, accurate run-time data collection, and containment of production interrupts.
Asset Productivity Optimization
Run-time execution of automation scenarios keeps equipment assets utilized and enables material to move efficiently through the line. In conjunction with Applied’s SmartFactory FullAuto solution, material is transported, loaded, processed, and unloaded without requiring operator intervention. Observed and reported results have seen 10%-15% increase in wafer output per day with automated dispatching and a 10% increase in tool utilization.
Human Error Reduction
The largest contributor to misprocessing and scrap events is human error, which accounts for 50% of annual line yield loss. EA enables quality control pre-checks to validate the correct material that is matched with the appropriate sequence and recipe for material processing. Additionally, quality and engineering data requirements are met consistently, accurately, and automatically based on Equipment Data Collection (EDC) spec configurations.
Integrated Data Capability
EA integrates the largest source of data in manufacturing the equipment. Data collection records are compiled and distributed to the appropriate applications for controls, reporting, and analytics. Analysis of equipment state performance and tool internal timing can identify hidden cycle time losses and equipment performance variabilities. Feedback from CIM control systems (e.g. SmartFactory Run-to-Run, SPC, Fault Detection) enables process tuning and containment of scrap events based on early indicator signals.
Equipment Automation Control Layer: Interface between tools and CIM Systems (MES, SPC, Fault Detection, Maintenance Management).
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