TNO International Centre for Contamination Control (ICCC)

As Moore's Law dictates, the number of transistors on the surface of semiconductors nearly doubles every year. As industrial developments demand smaller surfaces, the industry strives to keep up with technological advancements. With each development, contamination control is crucial. TNO's aim is to accelerate the introduction of future electronics manufacturing technology by developing contamination control solutions for the entire industry.

TNO International Centre for Contamination Control (ICCC) is initiated and dedicated to developing the highest standards and practices in contamination control, for preventing and eliminating both particle contamination and molecular contamination. This centre is equipped with the most advanced facilities, including the ultra-clean handling equipment for e.g. EUV masks, diagnostic tools for both particle and molecular contamination, inspection and analysis tools as well as various cleaning equipment. We apply our 15 years of knowledge and experience in the field to develop the newest, most innovative, most reliable solutions possible. Both in current immersion and the latest innovations in EUV Lithography, TNO leads the industry in contamination control methods. As production moves towards smaller devices and larger substrates, TNO is addressing the contamination control challenges faced by both OEMs (equipment suppliers) and their supply chain as well as IDMs (device manufacturers).

Approach on Contamination Control

TNO focuses on stringent contamination control on three levels:

  • Prevention: Stringent contamination control begins with prevention. By developing the technology to eliminate the possibility of contamination before it starts, we set the standard for safe, reliable production.
  • Diagnostics: Effective detection and analysis of contaminants is also essential. Our diagnostic techniques and strategies enable companies to detect particles as small as 20 nanometers – and our research is focusing on even smaller particles.
  • Remediation: Thorough and complete plans to both mitigate and remove contaminants are an essential part of our work.

Leading in Contamination Control

TNO has productive partnerships with industry leaders, like ASML & Carl Zeiss SMT. In these partnerships, we address the specific challenges the businesses face, solve their immediate issues, and develop strategies for long-term control and cleanliness. We also are part of a Europewide initiative, ENIAC, to help accelerate public-private partnerships in technology development. The experimentation and strategies we develop are setting the standard throughout the European Union, and will become the protocols used at every stage of semiconductor production. What we can offer:

  • Design and development of ultra-clean module and systems
  • Independent qualification of ultra-clean module and systems
  • Lifetime research of optics, mask and coatings
  • Assessment and improvement of the supply chain
  • Feasibility study of new technologies
  • Training and consultancy on contamination control


Next generation EUV based chips one step closer with TNO’s EBL2

28 March 2017
Dr. Dorsel, Board Member at Carl Zeiss, and Paul de Krom, CEO at TNO officially opened the EBL2 on 27 March 2017. The EBL2 is a unique and independent analysis facility at TNO in Delft which brings next... Read more

Semiconductor Equipment

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