Advanced Silicon Processing & Manufacturing Techniques

Mission Statement
About this Postgraduate Programme
University Partners
Industry Partners
Modules within the Programme
Frequently Asked Questions
How to Apply

The new IGDS MSc programme "Advanced Silicon Processing & Manufacturing Technologies" (ASP&MT) has taken off with a flying start ............the first module was delivered during the period March to may 2000 at The University of Edinburgh and currently the second module is being delivered at UMIST, Manchester.

Malt Whisky, Indian Cuisine and Silicon Chips!

An intrepid band of 18 delegates from NMI member companies and Further Education Colleges attended the Module 1 Residential Week held at the University of Edinburgh from 3rd to 7th April 2000. The Module 'Device and Process Integration of Silicon ICs' had previously commenced on 6th March with the issuing of course notes, reading material and programme documentation. It drew to a close upon completion by the delegates of the module examination on Friday 26th May. Module 1 - the first delegates

Delivery of the module was under the direction of the module convenor, Dr Les Haworth, who was responsible for all academic matters, whilst the logistics and organization were handled by the Programme co-ordinator, Mrs. Sandy Peace working from the IGDS Office at the University of Surrey.

The residential week is the core activity of the IGDS modules so great attention was given to both academic and social issues short the organizers worked to make the learning process fun. All of the delegates, organizers and visiting lecturers stayed in the Suffolk Lodge Hotel just 10 minutes walk from the King's Buildings, University of Edinburgh. Yes, even the weather was kind and taxis were unnecessary!

Participants arrived on the Sunday evening for drinks and dinner prior to an illustrated talk by Peter Dryburgh on the 'History of Malt Whisky' which was followed by a tasting of several representative Malts including one rare Laphroig brew.

Monday morning came and all gathered in the lecture room for the beginning of an intense week of lectures, tutorials and laboratory/workstation demonstrations. The accompanying photographs show some of the delegates during a break in the timetable, engrossed in a lecture by DR Mike Duncan, Motorola on 'Shrink Migration-Issues seen in a manufacturing environment' and studiously battling with a TCAD simulation exercise. Light relief followed most evenings with dinner in the hotel or private expeditions into Edinburgh which culminated with an informal Module Banquet in the 5 star Shamiana Indian restaurant in the heart of Edinburgh. The week was enjoyed by all and the organizers left Edinburgh relieved that everything had run smoothly.

The residential week was part of the first delivery of one of our IGDS modules, and was an important component. As an educational activity it was appreciated and valued by the attendees. Feedback from the delegates was positive and complementary, however compliancy by the organizers will be avoided as, with hind sight, they can see some weak aspects of the organization and documentation that need to be rectified. In this programme both the delegates and organizers are involved in the learning process, which can only be to the advantage of industry and academia. Mike Duncan from Motorola during his Lecture and A TCAD Simulation Exercise with Professor Anthony Walton


The programme has been developed by a unique partnership consisting of ten universities and the UK National Microelectronics Institute (NMI) representing the major silicon manufacturing companies and their equipment and materials vendors.

The programme addresses a critical issue for this industrial sector ........namely, the skills shortage and skills mismatch of professional engineers. It does so by providing a world class, part-time modular study programme for graduate, professional engineers and scientists employed by the participating companies. Upon completing the programme the successful delegates (students) will have 'state-of-the-art' knowledge of the current and developing technologies and processes used for commercial silicon manufacture within this highly competitive global industry. The visible reward for the delegates is a postgraduate award (Certificate, Diploma or an MSc) which will facilitate "fast-track" career advancement and signal the accumulation of specialist technical knowledge. The programme is flexible as it permits delegates to undertake one or two individual modules prior to registration for the postgraduate programme at any one of the ten participating universities.

The programme is funded by a £435,000 grant from the UK EPSRC under the Integrated Graduate Development Scheme (IGDS) and by fees paid by the delegates' employer. A tight business plan ensures good financial control, such that a delegate from an NMI member company can gain a postgraduate MSc at a cost of £8,400 to the company with a total of only 10 to 11 weeks absence from his/her place of work.


The complete programme consists of up to 16 different taught modules spanning all of the enabling technologies, skills and disciplines required for silicon manufacture. The minimal absence of the delegates from the factory floor, is achieved by employing a mix of distance learning and short periods of direct contact teaching. All taught modules have the same structure being approximately two months in duration with the core activity being a one week residential period at the university delivering the module. This Residential week is an intensive period of study with about 35 hours of contact time which includes lectures, problem solving exercises and laboratory TCAD demonstrations. Specialist lecturers are drawn from industry and academia. A modules typically has the following structure:

The award of an MSc demands typically 3 years of part-time study with only 10 to 11 weeks absence from the place of work, during which time the successful delegate will have completed 8 modules plus a project, normally carried out at his/her place of work. The awards of a postgraduate Diploma or Certificate require proportionally less time and shorter absences from the factory. Delegates may join the programme at any time during the calendar year. The range of options are shown below:

EWME 2000

Clive Dyson (NMI) and Peter Hemment (UniS) attended the Third European Workshop on Microelectronics Education (EWME 2000) held on 18th & 19th May in Fuveau, France, where they presented an Oral Paper "A University Network for the Silicon Industry" The paper was very well received by the attendees from Japan, China, Korea, USA & Europe, and prompted much discussion from numerous interested parties.

Valuable new contracts were made with potential collaborators and overseas customers. Attendees were intrigued and full of admiration of our success in forming an efficient working consortium of ten autonomous universities.

A message from the Programme Director:

With great pleasure, I am able to report that our IGDS MSc programme "Advanced Silicon Processing & Manufacturing Technologies" is underway, and currently we have 27 registered delegates, of whom 24 are engineers from silicon Fabs. Approximately 90% of the delegates wish to study for the postgraduate MSc degree.

Module 1 "Device & Process Integration for Silicon IC's" was delivered during March and April at the University of Edinburgh, under the guidance of the convenor, Dr Les Haworth. Feedback from the attendees has been positive and complimentary.

The current priorities for the programme administrators ate to install electronic networking to enhance communications between delegates and their tutors and, also, too update the academic documentation.

Module 6 "Measurement Techniques & Failure Analysis" is currently underway at UMIST, Manchester, under the guidance of Professor Tony Peaker. Module 8 "Power Devices & Processes" will be delivered at Swansea (convenor Professor Phil Mawby) commencing in October.

This IGDS programme is a unique partnership involving 10 universities and most of the principal companies participating in UK Silicon IC manufacture. Please keep the organizers appraised of the industry's requirements in the field of education and training ----- we need feedback and guidance from the companies to ensure that we meet your needs.

Professor Peter L F Hemment
1 June 2000




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Enquiries and further information from:

Mrs Sandra Peace
IGDS Programme Co-ordinator,
IGDS Office
School of Electronics and Physical Sciences
University of Surrey

Tel +44 (0)1483 686 138
Fax +44 (0)1483 686 139
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