An original equipment manufacturer (OEM) that provides semiconductor backend services conducts chip testing for consumer and industrial product applications. The manufacturer has a product testing line with chip testing machines operating at a temperature range between 60 to 130ºC (140 to 266ºF).
The manufacturer needed a solution for their customized integrated circuit (IC) chip testing module and was unable to identify a heater option to meet their exact requirement for a small heater in a high watt density that could cycle quickly. Traditional solutions that employ small diameter cartridge heaters inside of machined housings can exhibit poor thermal uniformity and a short life span. These solutions also yield a slower heat up and cool down time, and are more difficult to integrate due to thicker machined housings and multiple sets of terminations.
Watlow® solved the OEM's specific heater need by customizing an ULTRAMIC® advanced ceramic heater to match the requirements of the chip testing machine. Watlow's ULTRAMIC heaters are constructed with aluminum nitride (AIN), enabling a high watt density, fast response heater design in a small package. The heaters were machined to a specific geometry to allow easy integration with the customer's device. Bonded Type K thermocouples ensured tight process control.