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1. WO2009079636 - PROCÉDÉS ET APPAREILS POUR RÉDUIRE LA CONTAMINATION DE SUBSTRATS

Note: Texte fondé sur des processus automatiques de reconnaissance optique de caractères. Seule la version PDF a une valeur juridique

[ EN ]

AMENDED CLAIMS [received by the International Bureau on 24 June 2009 (24.06.2009)]

1. An enclosure for holding and providing a double purge to wafer containers with wafers therein, the wafer containers having a polymer shell with a polymer confining wall, the enclosure having an opening for receiving the wafer containers, and the wafer containers seatable in the enclosure, the enclosure having two purging systems each providing a purge gas of a different concentration or composition to the wafer containers when they are seated, one for purging the interior of the wafer containers and one for directing a purge gas to the exterior surface of the confining wall of the wafer containers whereby progressive drying of the polymer confining walls of the wafer containers is effected.

2. The enclosure of claim 1 wherein the enclosure is movable for transporting wafers within the confines of a fabrication facility.

3. An enclosure for holding and seating wafer containers with wafers therein, the wafer containers each having a polymer shell, the enclosure accessible for receiving wafer containers and having a shroud that is removable for placement and removal of the shroud and that extends at least partially over a wafer container for providing a purge gas intermediate said shroud and the wafer container for washing the exterior surface of containment walls of the wafer container with a purge gas.

4. An enclosure for holding a plurality of wafer containers with wafers therein, the wafer containers each having a polymer shell, the enclosure having individual receiving regions for seating individual wafer containers, each receiving region having one purge outlet for interior purging of the wafer container and one outlet for purging the exterior of the container.

5. The enclosure of claim 4 wherein the purge outlet for interior purging is connected to a nitrogen gas source and the outlet for purging the exterior of the container is connected to a source of clean dry air.

6. An enclosure for holding a plurality of wafer containers with wafers therein, the wafer containers each having a polymer confining wall, the enclosure having individual receiving regions for individual wafer containers, each receiving region having one purge outlet for interior purging of the wafer container and one outlet for purging the exterior of the container thereby providing a double purge to wafer containers, the enclosure further having an ambient air cleaning system.

7. A method for reducing crystal forming contaminants with a controlled environment in a substrate container, the method comprising the steps of: enclosing a substrate that is vulnerable to crystal formation in a sealed, openable substrate container; seating the substrate container, purging the interior of the container with nitrogen when the substrate container is seated; providing a exterior surface purge gas wash of the container with at least clean dry air when the substrate container is seated; and constraining the exterior surface purge gas wash within a few inches of the exterior surface.

8. The method of claim 7 wherein the step of purging the interior of the container includes injecting nitrogen into the interior.

9. The method of claim 7 wherein the step of claim 7 includes utilizing clean dry air for the exterior surface purge gas wash.

10. The method of claim 7 including the step of enclosing the substrate container in a stocker with purge connections for accomplishing the interior purge and the exterior surface purge gas wash.

11. A system for providing double purging for the polymer confining wall of a wafer container including an internal wafer container purge system and an external wafer container surface purge providing an external surface purge and an internal wafer container purge.

12. A system for providing an external purge washing of the containment walls of a wafer container, the system comprising purge outlets proximate to the wafer container.

13. A wafer container having a shroud for concentrating an external purge along the exterior surface of a containment wall.

14. A wafer container having a purge outlet that deflects purge gas along the exterior surface of the wafer container.

15. A wafer container having a polymer shell, the wafer container having a pair of purge inlet portions, one for purging the interior of the wafer container and one for purging the exterior surface of walls defining the interior.

16. A wafer container having purge conduits for directing purge gas to the exterior surface of containment walls of the container.

17. A wafer container having purge conduits extending over the exterior surface of containment walls for conveying and constraining purge gas for washing the exterior surface of the containment walls of the wafer container.

18. A wafer container having a door and a shell portion sealable together to define an interior for holding wafers, the shell portion having a double wall and a port for injecting purge gas therein.

19. The wafer container of claim 18 wherein the door has an open interior and a latching mechanism therein and a port for injecting purge gas into said interior of said door.

20. A shroud conforming to a portion of the exterior shape of a wafer container for defining a space along the exterior surface of the wafer container whereby a purge gas may be injected into said space can washing the exterior surface of containment walls of the wafer container.

21. A method of minimizing haze growth and contamination of wafers in a sealed wafer container, the method comprising the steps of: seating a wafer container; providing an interior purge of the wafer container as it is seated; also providing an exterior purge directed to the exterior walls of the wafer container by way of a dedicated purge outlet as the wafer container is seated.

22. A method of minimizing haze growth and contamination of a substrate in a sealed substrate container, the method comprising the steps of: seating the substrate container; providing an interior purge of the substrate container when it is seated; providing an exterior purge directed to the exterior walls of the substrate container by way of a dedicated purge outlet also when it is seated.

23. A front opening wafer container for 300 mm wafers, having a containment wall with means for purge gas washing of an exterior surface of the containment wall.

24. The container of claim 23 wherein the means is a double wall providing a secondary sealed interior or a shroud.

25. An enclosure for holding substrate containers, the substrate containers each configured for holding at least one substrate therein, the enclosure having a closable opening for receiving the substrate containers, the enclosure having two purging systems each providing a purge gas of a different concentration or composition, one for the interior of the substrate containers and one for directing a purge gas to the exterior of the wafer container.

26. The enclosure of claim 25 wherein the enclosure is movable for transporting wafers within the confines of a fabrication facility.

27. An enclosure for holding wafer containers with wafers therein, the enclosure accessible for receiving wafer containers and having a shroud that extends at least partially over a wafer container for providing a purge gas intermediate said shroud and the wafer container for washing the exterior surface of containment walls of the wafer container with a purge gas.

28. An enclosure for holding a plurality of substrate containers with substrates therein, the enclosure having individual receiving regions for individual substrate containers, each receiving region having one purge outlet for interior purging of the wafer container and one outlet for purging the exterior of the container.

29. The enclosure of claim 28 wherein the purge outlet for interior purging is connected to a nitrogen gas source and the outlet for purging the exterior of the container is connected to a source of clean dry air.

30. The enclosure of claim 28 wherein each substrate container has a pair of purge inlets, one inlet for receiving purge gas for the interior of said substrate container, the other for receiving purge gas to wash the exterior surface of a containment wall of the substrate container.

31. An enclosure for holding a plurality of substrate containers with substrates therein, the substrate containers each having a polymer shell, the enclosure having individual receiving regions defined by partitions for seating individual substrate containers, each receiving region having one purge outlet for interior purging of the substrate container and one outlet for purging the exterior of the container, the enclosure further having an ambient air cleaning system.

32. An enclosure for holding a plurality of substrate containers with substrates therein, the enclosure having individual receiving regions for individual substrate containers, each receiving region having a shroud for at least partially covering the respective substrate container seated at said receiving region., each receiving region having one purge outlet for interior purging of the wafer container and one outlet for purging the exterior of the container,

33. An enclosure for holding a plurality of substrate containers with substrates therein, the enclosure having individual receiving regions for individual substrate containers, each receiving region having a shroud for at least partially covering the respective substrate container seated at said receiving region., each receiving region having one purge outlet for interior purging of the wafer container and one outlet for purging the exterior of the container,

34. A system for providing double purging for a reticle SMIF pod including an internal purge and an external wafer container surface purge wherein the external surface purge is constrained to follow the contours of the external surface of the reticle SMIF pod.

35. A system for providing an external purge washing of the containment walls of a reticle SMIF pod, the system comprising purge outlets proximate to the wafer container.

36. A reticle SMIF pod having a shroud for concentrating an external purge along the exterior surface of a containment wall of the reticle SMIF pod.

37. A reticle SMIF pod having a purge outlet that deflects purge gas along the exterior surface of the reticle SMIF pod.

38. A reticle SMIF pod having a pair of purge inlet portions, one for purging the interior of the reticle SMIF pod and one for purging the exterior surface of walls defining the interior.

39. A reticle SMIF pod having purge conduits for directing purge gas to the exterior surface of containment walls of the container.

40. A reticle SMIF pod having purge conduits extending over the exterior surface of containment walls for conveying and constraining purge gas for washing the exterior surface of the containment walls of the reticle SMIF pod.

41. A reticle SMIF pod having a door and a shell portion sealable together to define an interior for holding reticles, the shell portion having a double wall and a port for injecting purge gas therein.

42. The reticle SMIF pod of claim 41 wherein the door has an open interior and a latching mechanism therein and a port for injecting purge gas into said interior of said door.

43. A shroud conforming to a portion of the exterior shape of a reticle SMIF pod for defining a space along the exterior surface of the reticle SMIF pod whereby a purge gas may be injected into said space can washing the exterior surface of containment walls of the reticle SMIF pod.

44. A method of minimizing haze growth and contamination of reticles in a sealed reticle SMIF pod, the method comprising the steps of: providing an interior purge of the reticle SMIF pod; providing an exterior purge directed to the exterior walls of the reticle SMIF pod by way of a dedicated purge outlet.

45. A method of minimizing haze growth and contamination of reticles in a sealed reticle SMIF pod, the method comprising the steps of: providing an interior purge of the reticle SMIF pod;

providing an exterior purge directed to the exterior walls of the reticle SMIF pod by way of a dedicated purge outlet.

46. A system for providing double purging for a substrate container including an internal purge and an external wafer container surface purge wherein the external surface purge is constrained to follow the contours of the external surface of the substrate container.

47. A system for providing an external purge washing of the containment walls of a substrate container, the system comprising purge outlets proximate to the wafer container.

48. A substrate container having a shroud for concentrating an external purge along the exterior surface of a containment wall of the substrate container.

49. A substrate container having a purge outlet that deflects purge gas along the exterior surface of the substrate container.

50. A substrate container having a pair of purge inlet portions, one for purging the interior of the substrate container and one for purging the exterior surface of walls defining the interior.

51. A substrate container having purge conduits for directing purge gas to the exterior surface of containment walls of the container.

52. A substrate container having purge conduits extending over the exterior surface of containment walls for conveying and constraining purge gas for washing the exterior surface of the containment walls of the substrate container.

53. A substrate container having a door and a shell portion sealable together to define an interior for holding reticles, the shell portion having a double wall and a port for injecting purge gas therein.

54. The substrate container of claim 41 wherein the door has an open interior and a latching mechanism therein and a port for injecting purge gas into said interior of said door.

55. A shroud conforming to a portion of the exterior shape of a substrate container for defining a space along the exterior surface of the substrate container whereby a purge gas may be injected into said space can washing the exterior surface of containment walls of the substrate container.

56. A method of minimizing haze growth and contamination of wafers in a sealed substrate container, the method comprising the steps of: seating the sealed substrate container at a receiving region; providing an interior purge of the substrate container while the sealed substrate container is seated in the receiving region; providing an exterior purge directed to the exterior walls of the substrate container by way of a dedicated purge outlet while the sealed substrate container is seated in the receiving region.

57. A method of minimizing haze growth and contamination of substrates in a sealed substrate container, the method comprising the steps of: seating the sealed substrate container at a receiving region; providing an interior purge of the substrate container while the sealed substrate container is seated in the receiving region; providing an exterior purge directed to the exterior walls of the substrate container by way of a dedicated purge outlet while the sealed substrate container is seated in the receiving region.