Fast. Accurate. Agile. Lean.
Already the industry leader in fab cycle times, GLOBALFOUNDRIES operations in Fab 1 continue to undergo an ambitious transformation that applies Lean manufacturing principles to complex semiconductor fabrication for ultimate efficiency and responsiveness. By reducing production time for a single wafer, Lean techniques will enable GLOBALFOUNDRIES to adjust production to match customer demand-all the while limiting risk, reducing waste, and accelerating time-to-market for customers.
Lean builds on GLOBALFOUNDRIES' patented production automation capabilities, called Automated Precision Manufacturing (APM). This unique set of technologies, logic, business processes and employee skill sets creates full synchronization within and across fabs.
Efficiency has become more important than ever in meeting customer demands and staying competitive. The traditional approach to improving manufacturing efficiency has been to introduce new technologies such as smaller circuit sizes or larger wafers for increased throughput. In addition to these, GLOBALFOUNDRIES continues to focus on improving the process of manufacturing itself through Lean Manufacturing.
With roots dating back to the Industrial Revolution, the Lean methodology is used to continuously increase the efficiency of a process through reduced costs and improved quality. More recently, the principles of Lean have been refined and put to work on the production floor by companies such as Toyota and its pioneering Toyota Production System (TPS).*
At GLOBALFOUNDRIES, Lean focuses on increasing value from our customers' perspective while avoiding waste in all processes through continuous improvement. Our Lean initiative aims to reduce the time and cost of semiconductor production by squeezing idle time out of the manufacturing process. Semiconductor manufacturers typically move wafers through the production line in lots of approximately 25 wafers. However, many tools can only process a handful of wafers at a time, meaning that up to 32 percent of wafers in production are sitting idle, waiting to be processed. Lean manufacturing is designed to shrink both idle waiting time and total wafer production time.
GLOBALFOUNDRIES' Lean principles include:
Using Lean to lower cycle time means that ideas move from design to product to market faster, allowing GLOBALFOUNDRIES customers to realize revenue more quickly and react to market demand more effectively.
* Statement is not meant to imply endorsement of either Toyota or its pioneering Toyota Production System (TPS).