September 23, 2011

Keithley Upgrades Semiconductor Test Software for High Throughput Wafer Production Test

Keithley Instruments, Inc., a world leader in advanced electrical test instruments and systems, has introduced an upgrade to its popular Keithley Test Environment (KTE) semiconductor test software. KTE Version 5.3 is designed for use with Keithley's S530 Parametric Test Systems, the company's fastest, most cost-effective line of process control monitoring solutions to date.

KTE is a powerful test development and execution software platform that has served hundreds of semiconductor fabs worldwide with Keithley's previous-generation parametric test systems. Now, Keithley's S530 test systems can leverage the same industry-proven software platform, providing flexible test plan development and high speed test execution for even the most demanding production environments. Users of existing Keithley S400 and S600 Series parametric testers especially benefit from KTE Version 5.3 on the S530 because existing measurement routines can easily be ported to the S530, and identical test plans can be shared between existing testers and new S530 systems.

Extending the KTE test development and execution environment to S530 systems brings together the advantages of Keithley's three decades of field experience in parametric test code development with the fastest, most advanced system hardware available in the market. S530 instrumentation provides the speed and wide measurement range that parametric test applications like process control monitoring demand.

Keithley is committed to supporting its parametric test customers by providing new test systems that are highly compatible with its earlier systems. This commitment to maintaining software compatibility ensures a smoother migration path and protects fabs' test software investment when adding newer, faster testers to their test floors. For new Keithley parametric test customers, this commitment to system software continuity means they can be confident their test systems are based on industry-proven software.

For customers already using earlier versions of KTE, KTE V5.3 speeds and simplifies integrating S530 test systems into their test floors:
  • ·         The same test recipes and test plans can be used for all Keithley automated parametric test systems, which not only shortens the learning curve for test engineers and operators working with multiple systems but offers a smooth migration path to protect the fab's test development investment when adding new high speed systems to the test floor or replacing older ones.
  • ·         Users can continue working with the familiar user libraries they've developed for earlier Keithley systems over the years after recompiling and rebuilding them for use with the S530. Typically, only minimal debugging is required.
  • ·         KTE V5.3 simplifies creating new user access point (UAP) source code for conditional test sequencing and customizing the flow of the S530's system operation. UAP source code developed for earlier Keithley systems is applicable to S530 systems with minimal adjustments.
  • ·         The tools within KTE provide identical functionality for all Keithley parametric test platforms.

KTE for the S530 is designed to run on a Linux operating system on a standard industrial PC to ensure long-term stability and ease of maintenance. The software has been optimized for speed and extended reliability in high throughput production test environments. S530 systems running KTE V5.3 can address all the DC I-V and C-V measurements required in process control monitoring, process reliability monitoring, and device characterization. They are optimized for use in production parametric test environments that must accommodate a broad mix of products or wherever wide application flexibility and fast test plan development are critical.

For More Information.
Additional information on Keithley Test Environment, Version 5.3 for the Model S530 is available: To download a copy of a brochure on S530 system options, visit: To learn more about Keithley, contact the company.

About Keithley Instruments, Inc.
With more than 60 years of measurement expertise, Keithley Instruments has become a world leader in advanced electrical test instruments and systems. Our customers are scientists and engineers in the worldwide electronics industry involved with advanced materials research, semiconductor device development and fabrication, and the production of end products such as portable wireless devices. The value we provide them is a combination of products for their critical measurement needs and a rich understanding of their applications to improve the quality of their products and reduce their cost of test. In 2010, Keithley Instruments joined Tektronix as part of its test and measurement portfolio.


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