NAPA -- As the semiconductor market has flourished over most of the past three decades, so has Royce Instruments, a designer and manufacturer of high precision innovative integrated circuit (IC) chip wire test and assembly solutions with worldwide sales and a technical presence in over 30 countries around the globe.
Founded in a Mountain View garage in 1983, privately held Royce Instruments (royceinstruments.com) today is a standalone subsidiary of V-TEK, Inc., offering two product lines including wire-bond and die-bond testing, as well as solutions for picking and the sorting of semiconductor devices into waffle packs or Gel-Paks.
Royce offers its products for semicustom die handling in the medical device, laser diode/LED photonics and telecommunications industries (for smartphones and other hand-held devices). The company's products are used by major semiconductor IC manufacturers as well as by defense and electronic assembly contractors, aerospace companies and most of the world's largest auto and medical electronics device manufacturers.
[caption id="attachment_95469" align="alignright" width="360"] Royce Instruments AutoPlacer MP300 die sorter is one of several die sorters and bond testers in the company's product portfolio. The MP 300 is designed for automatic die sorting operations from semiconductor chip wafer maps.[/caption]
"Our bond-testers perform wire pull tests vertically, and solder ball, die bond and zone shear tests by moving the bonds horizontally," said Greg Heras, Vice President, Worldwide Sales.
Located at 831 Latour Ct. in Napa, Royce Instruments has 15 full-time employees plus a network of distributors and commissioned representatives.
"We sell our equipment through agreements with independent representatives and distributors in Europe and Asia, including China, Southeast Asia, Korea and Japan. On both continents distributors buy our products for resale and take title to them as well as install, train and service our equipment. We also sell our products in other upcoming markets such as Russia, Brazil, India, Australia, Turkey and Israel." In the U.S., Royce sells through manufacturers reps serving similar companies offering non-competing product lines for joint-demand products.
The semiconductor industry has two distinct production phases. At the front end, companies take a base silicon wafer and fabricate IC devices using a photo mask layer with a mounting pattern, followed by several succeeding process steps.
The second, or back-end assembly and test phase involves semiconductor wafers that are sawed into individual chips.