Dr. Gary W. Rubloff
Research Topics
Process diagnostics, sensing, metrology, and control
Semiconductor manufacturing processes and equipment
Systems modeling, simulation, and optimization
Engineered learning systems

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Fall 2000: Evolution of Copper Interconnect









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Team topics
As a systems engineering design project focused on a specific technology domain, the class had to cover issues which involved both systems engineering process and domain-specific technology elements.  Five teams were identified:

development: project organization, milestones, consolidation of results

processes: specific unit processes and models for them

equipment: equipment choices and logistics modeling

factory: factory decisions and logistics optimization

cost-of-ownership: unit process COO modeling

Cross-disciplinary organization
The class consisted of 31 students, with 13 enrolled in the materials course ENMA659S and 18 enrolled in either the systems engineering course ENSE623 or its professional masters counterpart ENSE643. The materials students represented several departments and programs, including materials science and engineering, mechanical engineering, electrical engineering, and chemical engineering.

Cross-disciplinary integration in the course was intentionally sought, and achieved through cross-listing, because of the potential pedagogical synergy and because systems engineering practice depends substantially on effective team integration with technology domain expertise. Indeed, this cross-disciplinary integration was considered a major benefit of the course by both systems and materials students at the end of the course.

In the case of this project, the team topics represented gradations from fairly intensive materials and process issues (processes team) to strongly systems centric topics (e.g., factory team).  All teams except processes included both systems and materials students.

It is important to note the mutual benefit expected in this course:

Materials students received a substantial experience with the manufacturing and systems issues which drive the microelectronics industry.  Specifically, the use of modeling at the process level, discrete event simulation for logistics within cluster tools and in the factory, cost of ownership considerations at the tool level, and overall project coordination are all important to the process engineers and others in semiconductor manufacturing.

Systems students obtained direct experience in working with engineers from a very different technical discipline, in extracting models and constructs necessary to carry out systems engineering for that domain, and in applying several types of systems modeling and strategies in team environments.