BUSINESS

WIT becomes first startup in Korea to develop portable probe station

By Lim Jeong-yeo
  • Published : Apr 5, 2017 - 11:58
  • Updated : Apr 5, 2017 - 14:08
Semiconductor equipment startup WIT on Thursday announced that it had recently become the first startup in Korea to develop and release a significantly smaller and lighter portable vacuum probe station.

A probe station is a device used to measure the electrical properties of products, such as semiconductors and LCDs, before the assembly process. WIT’s products are primarily used to conduct tests of semiconductor wafers.

“Most existing probe stations are about a meter wide and tall and are difficult to carry around due to their weight,” WIT’s CEO Choi Jae-wan said.
 
WIT’s portable probe station, with a smartphone placed beside it for size comparison (WIT)

“Our product, however, is much smaller, at 40 centimeters wide and 20 centimeters tall, and therefore much more portable. The key is our integrated concept and design technology, which focused on making the device as small as humanly possible.”

The price of WIT’s new probe station is approximately one-quarter the prices of existing products.

The product may be small, but it has all the core functions of a probe station: vacuum, variable temperature (minus 180 to 400 degrees Celsius), and low current measurement. The vacuum function removes all materials that could interfere with the measurements (water molecules, gas formation, etc.), thereby enhancing accuracy. The variable temperature function predicts the lifespan of the subject being measured (by exposure to heat) and improves reliability by identifying the causes of electron transfer failure (by cooling). Used to detect and measure weak electronic signals, the low current measurement function, Choi claims, is capable of detecting even ultra-low currents.

The company has also built a broad business network. It is registered as a “family company” of Korea Polytechnic University and Sungkyunkwan University and has been named as a partner company of a domestic conglomerate-affiliated display producer. In addition, WIT has signed strategic partnership agreements with German and American companies. With its own plant in Suwon, Gyeonggi Province, WIT also has a fully equipped make-to-order production system. Having recognized WIT’s technological prowess, the Gyeonggi Center for Creative Economy & Innovation is providing support for the company’s overseas marketing activities.

(jshwang@heraldcorp.com)