LIVINGSTON, SCOTLAND: memsstar Ltd, a leading provider of deposition and etch equipment and process expertise to the micro-electrical mechanical systems (MEMS) and semiconductor industries, has doubled its cleanroom manufacturing space to meet growing customer demand. The facility expansion follows record orders of more than $20 million in 2010 and projected high double-digit revenue growth for 2011.
In addition to increasing capacity, the newly expanded facility adjoining the company’s headquarters in Livingston, Scotland will allow memsstar to more efficiently remanufacture, refurbish and repurpose semiconductor etch and deposition equipment. It also allows memsstar to handle larger, more complex equipment. As a result of the expansion, memsstar has added new positions in logistics, administration and skilled and semi-skilled engineering.
The facility has been completely re-designed to suit memsstar’s manufacturing requirements with seven flexibly configured bays, which the company will start utilizing immediately. memsstar’s remanufacturing division, pt35, delivers refurbished and repurposed etch and deposition equipment for MEMS fabrication and R&D as well as semiconductor manufacturing in Europe. It will use the expanded facility to reduce lead time for refurbished OEM platforms as a result of increased manufacturing efficiencies.
“The secondary equipment market in Europe has seen strong growth, driven primarily by semiconductor manufacturing,” said John West, MD, VLSI Research Europe. “Cost clearly plays a role in the decision to invest in pre-owned equipment, but quality has become a significant differentiator, with companies like memsstar able to deliver extremely high-quality tools. Over and above the tools themselves, secondary equipment companies are now bringing to market high levels of process expertise and related service and support offerings that have further increased adoption of refurbished tools as a truly cost-effective approach to manufacturing.”
“Refurbished and repurposed equipment is coming of age as a critical component in the strategies of semiconductor manufacturers in Europe,” said Peter Connock, CEO of memsstar. “Our ability to deliver the highest quality equipment has led to significant sales growth of our refurbished tools for semiconductor manufacturing as well as repurposed semiconductor equipment for use in MEMS development and manufacturing. This expansion affords increased efficiency due to its improved facilities and layout and showcases our capabilities as a credible, high-quality supplier of both remanufactured and proprietary equipment.”
Besides the gains expected in its remanufacturing process, memsstar will also benefit from additional capacity to support its own proprietary range of products for MEMS applications. The company’s Solo, Sentry and Multi process tools deliver advanced etch, surface preparation and deposition processes to support MEMS R&D and volume manufacturing. memsstar platforms ensure the performance, control and yield required for manufacturing current and next-generation MEMS devices.
“Two trends have driven our expansion, the increased importance and significance of the secondary equipment market for semiconductor manufacturing and the maturation of MEMS manufacturing with its increasingly advanced requirements,” said Connock. “memsstar is ideally positioned to address both markets with our significant process expertise and equipment offerings, which allow us to provide customers the path of least risk to successful, cost-effective manufacturing. The expansion further secures our position as a reliable and committed partner that can fully support a broadening customer base and additional anticipated growth into 2012.”