Air Products and Showa Denko have extended their 10 year joint venture for etch and chamber cleaning products by building a new facility in Kawasaki, Japan, to manufacture hexafluoride butadiene (C4F6).

Showa Denko Air Products Co. Ltd (SDAP) was formed in 1996 to capitalise on Air Products’ fluorine handling capabilities and Showa Denko’s technical and operating expertise in large-scale perfluorocarbon production facilities.

Since 1997, when SDAP built a production facility for products such as tetrafluoromethane (CF4) and hexafluoride (C2F6) in Kawasaki, it has undertaken three expansions to more than double capacity at the plant.

CF4 and C2F6 remain reliable and cost competitive etch and chamber cleaning gases. Additonally, as logic and memory device manufacturing transitions to smaller geometries, higher aspect ratio dielectric etching will utilize more C4F6 because of the unique performance properties it exhibits within state-of-the-art high-density plasma etching processes.

C4F6 typically provides higher selective and better etch profiles compared to other etch gases, prompting Air Products and Showa Denko to extend their production joint venture by another five years and create a new plant.

Corning Painter, Vice President and General Manager of Electronics at Air Products commented on the extended joint venture, “Air Products is pleased to extend our relationship with Showa Denko for these important cleaning and etch gases”

“Showa Denko Air Products recognizes the increased importance of materials like C4F6 for critical dimension etch and is excited to be building capacity to meet that demand.”

Hisao Takamatsu, Senior Corporate Fellow and General Manager, Chemicals Division for Showa Denko echoed Painter’s views, “I am very pleased with the opportunity to develop this new business using the foundation of our amicable relationship with APD which began more than 10 years ago”

“I believe the result will be a stable foundation of our operating base and satisfied customers.”

The new plant is expected to be completed in the first half of this year.