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Technical Insight

Magazine Feature
This article was originally featured in the edition:
2023 Issue 5

AP&S shines with innovative NexAStep at SEMICON Europa & trains in its own academy


The semiconductor industry has made enormous strides in recent decades and plays a critical role in our modern world. A key component for the production of high-quality semiconductor devices is wet process equipment. These systems have been built by AP&S for 20 years and are essential for cleaning and treating wafers. The latest development from the company is the NexAStep wet bench, which is used for batch processing.

THE COMPACT SYSTEM DESIGN here represents a fundamental advancement that allows optimal use of the clean room, as the system takes up less space. The efficient arrangement of chemical supply, drains, receiver tanks and control cabinets in the module footprint further reduces space requirements and facilitates access for maintenance and operation. The modular plant design allows the plant to be quickly assembled, disassembled and reconfigured, increasing flexibility in production. This allows companies to quickly adapt to market changes when necessary and scale the plant to expand production capacity if necessary.

Wet bench NexAStep – Our new Batch Tool for high throughput Wet Processing

An integrated axis at the front of the NexAStep minimizes particle generation and simplifies direct access. Visually, a signal light integrated into the paneling provides 180-degree visibility for improved access and safety.

With its sister company tepcon GmbH, AP&S has a software company at its side that, among other things, assisted in the implementation of a user-friendly intuitive HMI. The simplified operation of the system, optimized monitoring and efficient control were the main focus here. This ensures efficient process control.

“In the area of condition monitoring, our solutions offer configurable visualization of real-time data in tables, graphs or flowcharts, monitoring of limit values and very timely alarming via email, SMS or WhatsApp. The customer can intervene flexibly at any time and from anywhere via his mobile device. Machine failures can be avoided in real time. The analysis of process data enables the recording and tracking of recipes. Operating errors become visible through comparison with historical data, which leads to optimization of recipe processes and efficient planning of service calls,” explains Christoph Kluge, Managing Director of tepcon GmbH.