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Samsung Electronics to Receive AIMS EUV Equipment from Germany’s ZEISS



Samsung Electronics Chairman Lee Jae-yong (second from left) poses for a photo with ZEISS Group CEO Karl Lamprecht (third from left) and Andreas Pehar (first from left), CEO of ZEISS SMT, after inspecting the latest semiconductor equipment during Lee’s visit to the ZEISS headquarters in Oberkochen, Germany on April 26 (local time).

It has been confirmed that Samsung Electronics has entered into a supply contract with the German optical company ZEISS for advanced semiconductor equipment. The collaboration between the two companies signifies not only an enhancement in processing yield, quality, and miniaturization pace but also diversifies the core semiconductor equipment supply chain while reducing dependence on ASML.

According to industry sources on April 29, Samsung Electronics Chairman Lee Jae-yong, who visited the ZEISS headquarters in Oberkochen, Germany, on April 26, toured the facilities where ZEISS manufactures the latest Area Image Measurement System (AIMS) extreme ultraviolet (EUV) optical lenses at their Semiconductor Mask Business (SMS) lab.

On the same day, ZEISS informed through its internal network that Lee, along with the Samsung Electronics’ executive team and ASML CEO Christopher Pueke, had visited the headquarters. ZEISS stated, “They witnessed the final stages of the AIMS EUV manufacturing process that will soon be delivered to Samsung Electronics. This visit is expected to elevate our cooperation with Samsung Electronics to a much higher level.”

ZEISS’s AIMS EUV equipment plays a crucial role similar to a microscope for inspecting the presence of defects in semiconductor photomasks (films containing electrical circuits). Samsung Electronics plans to deploy the AIMS EUV equipment in its state-of-the-art semiconductor facilities, including the foundries being constructed in Pyeongtaek and Yongin in South Korea, and in Taylor, Texas, in the U.S. Identifying even the smallest imperfections in photomasks is critical for improving the yield (ratio of good output to input) at Samsung Electronics’ foundries, which are currently considered inferior to those of Taiwan’s TSMC. The number and timing of equipment deployments will be adjusted based on Samsung’s investment pace and production plans.

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