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CANADA'S LEADING INFORMATION SOURCE FOR THE METALWORKING INDUSTRY

CANADA'S LEADING INFORMATION SOURCE FOR THE METALWORKING INDUSTRY

KUKA robotic solution for enhanced chip production

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Semiconductor fabricators are currently seeing a prime window to initiate capital investment projects that increase operational efficiency and blunt the effects of a skilled workforce shortage. To help fabricators meet the anticipated increase in demand, KUKA Robotics, in collaboration with the world’s leading semiconductor fabricators, has developed its latest robotic solution for enhanced chip production.

The company’s autonomous mobile robot (AMR) solution will be showcased at the upcoming SEMICON West show July 9-11 in San Francisco, California.

Designed to cater to the evolving needs of the semiconductor industry, KUKA’s AMR solution offers unparalleled flexibility and reliability in material handling and automated machine tending even in fabs using “box-style” wafer pods, like HA200 boxes. The mobile solution is particularly beneficial in areas where traditional automated systems are impractical.

KUKA’s mobile robotic wafer-handling system is engineered for seamless human-machine collaboration. This cutting-edge solution enables fabs to effortlessly transport, load and unload 200mm (8-inch) or 300mm (12-inch) wafer boxes, FOUPs, SMIF pods and even reticles, while also facilitating open cassette handling when necessary.

At the heart of the system is the KMR iisy, a fully integrated cobot and AMR that moves quickly, easily handles straight-line travel, turns and rotates around its own axis. Utilizing KUKA.NavigationSolution and equipped with an array of 3D cameras, the KMR iisy is fully autonomous without the need for navigational aids, like reflectors, and ensures safe operation in mixed (robot-human) environments. Laser scanners and wheel sensors collect data to create a map of the environment through Simultaneous Localization and Mapping (SLAM), allowing the KMR iisy to respond to changes in that environment to avoid collisions.

 For fabs, work is accomplished with KUKA’s LBR iisy cobot, cleanroom variant. The LBR iisy is a high-speed six-axis cobot with a payload capacity up to 15kg and a best-in-class 1,300 mm reach that can be taught by hand with little to no programing knowledge for fast, easy commissioning. As a unit, the AMR is controlled by a single smartPAD pro teach pendant. The cobot boasts cleanroom Class 1 (ISO 3) certification by Germany’s Fraunhofer Institute, ESD protection to ISO 61340-5-1 and ANSI ESD S20.20, making it optimal for the strictest cleanroom environments.  

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