TSMC Develops the World's First Automated Wafer Transportation System from Warehouse Dock to Fabs, Effectively Reducing 95% Manual Handling Weight
TSMC continues to enforce the workplace safety and has successfully developed the world's first "Automated Wafer Transportation System" from warehouse dock to Fab. The system was firstly introduced at Fab 18A in the first quarter of 2020. By implementing this system, 95% of manual handling weight for wafer transportations by warehouse staffs was reduced. TSMC plans to implement this system in all of its 12-inch GIGAFAB® facilities in Taiwan before the end of 2021.
Continuously Improve Workplace Safety and Work Efficiency through Operational Details
The raw wafer material was arranged and delivered to the dock of warehouse at each TSMC Fab. The TSMC warehouse staffs move these wafers out of the Hybox, and then put them on the conveyor belts to dispatch them to the clean room for production. To build a safer work environment and optimize the daily operational efficiency, TSMC’s Materials Supply Chain Management Division, Risk Management Program, Intelligent Manufacturing Center, Incoming Material Quality & Reliability Department, and New Fab Planning Department collaborate together to implement an improvement plan for automated wafer transportation. The system was successfully implemented in 21 months.
A Cross-Functional Task Force for Automated Wafer Transportation System
Operational Process of the Raw Wafers Transportation System from Warehouse Dock to Clean Room at Fabs
TSMC firstly implemented automated wafer transportation at its newly-launched Fab 18A. Adopting conveyor belts, automated guided vehicle(AGV) and robots, the system helped to reduce 95% of manual handling weight for wafer transportation at Fab 18A warehouse when it’s used for the first time in2020. Each warehouse staff can reduce 1.8 tons transportation workload every day. The system helped the warehouse staffs to be released from daily manual transportation work so that they can attend the on-the-job training programs organized by Materials Supply Chain Management Division to develop their skills and strengths. After trainings, the warehouse staffs can transfer their jobs from manual transportation to supply chain management or process integration.
Considering the space that the system requires at each warehouse, the dock area, and the daily wafer handling volume, TSMC will gradually implement this system in its Fab 12B, Fab 14A/B, Fab 15A/B and Fab 18B by 2021.
Timeframe of Automated Wafer Transportation System Introduction
Earth Friendly－ TSMC Cooperates with Wafer Suppliers to Develop Recycled Standardization Package Material
TSMC develops the world's first Automated Wafer Transportation System from warehouse dock to Fab. With the implementation of this system, Materials Supply Chain Management Division initiates an environmental protection program, which is to replace the disposable packaging material. TSMC cooperates with wafer suppliers to develop a recycled standard for all the packaging material to follow. After continuous testing and modification, a reusable, reliable standardized packaging material, which can be used in Automated Wafer Transportation System, were successfully developed. By replacing old disposable packaging materials, TSMC has achieved an annual reduction of 1,717 metric tons of cartons and 288 tons Styrofoam box, which equals to the reduction of 2,410 metric tons carbon footprint, 1,345 tons water footprint and 1.1 GWh of electricity. To amplify the impact of green energy, TSMC also shares this successful experience with its wafer suppliers to encourage them to implement the system and standardized packaging material in their daily operation.