There’s no denying the importance of semiconductors in modern life. From smartphones to smart factories, these crucial pieces of technology are what make Industry 4.0 possible. Semiconductors require precise and careful fabrication, and the potential for exposure to VOCs (volatile organic compounds) during the process calls for the highest standard of sensors and monitoring – something ION Science, as leaders in PID (photoionization detection) technology, can deliver.

Throughout the fabrication process, many different types of VOCs and gases are used in the creation of miniature integrated circuits on silicon wafers. It is critical that during fabrication, the wafers are only exposed to the precise and desired amounts of VOC. Any unaccounted for VOC, even at incredibly low levels, has the potential to interfere with the creation of the wafer and ruin the circuit. With demand for semiconductors at an all-time high, the risk of losing a batch of product due to improper monitoring is not something producers can afford to chance.

Employing the highest level of sensor monitoring in the semiconductor manufacturing facilities (known as fabs) is the best way to ensure product uniformity and to reduce the risk of defects from VOCs. Sensor monitoring in fabrication processes has the added benefit of protecting workers, those who are working directly with the semiconductors and wafers, and local communities by monitoring and controlling off-site emissions.

The risk of safety for workers is highest in cleanrooms, where a variety of chemicals are used throughout the stages of creating the wafers. Potential VOCs that workers could be exposed to include ethylene glycol, trichloroethylene and xylene, while as a result of certain processes, the risk of benzene and formaldehyde exposure become present. All of these pose serious health risks, even in low concentrations, making monitoring for VOCs and protecting the health of workers takes a high priority.

As experts in VOC monitoring and PID technology, ION Science has supported many semiconductor facilities in establishing appropriate monitoring technologies. ION Science’s leading range of MiniPID2 sensors are renowned through the industry as the PID sensor of choice for monitoring and instrumentation. With a range of personal, portable and fixed instruments suitable for use in fabs, ION Science can protect everything from individual workers through to whole sites and units.

For personal protection, the Cub range is the ideal choice for employees. Worn within the breathing zone for fast and accurate detection of VOCs, the Cub range weighs a mere 111g, making it lightweight and comfortable to wear while working. To keep sites safe, the Falco fixed detector provides superior sitewide monitoring and is able to withstand harsh conditions and temperatures without condensing. All ION Science instruments utilize the leading PID sensor technology to guarantee the highest level of detection in all circumstances.

ION Science continues to support the semiconductor industry with a range of high-quality sensors and instrumentation that protect against VOC exposure. In a new and exclusive guide, ION Science discusses the role of VOCs in semiconductor fabrication, and how to better understand the processes and ways of protecting sites and workers.

ION Science is a leading gas detection and prevention company offering a variety of solutions across a vast amount of applications. To learn more information about products offered by ION Science for gas and leak detection, view our products page. For more information about semiconductor solutions, or if you have a question for us, contact ION Science today.