Our MRC Process

Dave Muir

If you are going to call yourself an expert, then you need to walk the walk as well as talk the talk. The customer solutions group at Compugraphics takes our slogan: “the experts behind the mask”, very seriously. Each day the team lives up to this slogan by putting customers’ needs first to ensure we provide the best customer experience possible. This is proven by the regular positive feedback we receive from our customers commending our expertise, experience, response time and communication.

The customer solutions group is a single customer facing unit dealing with everything from first enquiry, key account management, requests for quotations, order entry, data prep, planning, to invoicing and logistics. The group has an average service in Compugraphics of 25 years and most of the team started in the Cleanroom physically making the product so we really have earned the title “Experts”.

But don’t just take my word for it. Below is an excerpt from our latest customer satisfaction survey (August 2014).

This month I will cover just one of the many reasons why our customers value our service so much – our Manufacturing Rule Checks (MRC).

Every single mask we make is first checked for “Design Manufacturability” using MRC to avoid, bad masks, bad wafer batches and wasting time starting the product all over again. Many designs, even with today’s most advanced Electronic Design Automation (EDA) with inbuilt Design Rule Checks (DRC), are still produced with small sub-micron “features” which are not intended to be part of the design or device.

Such small features can cause a lot of disruption during manufacture, as these are often too small to fully resolve on the mask and since our masks are checked for defects using die to database tools then there is a risk that these are detected as nuisance defects – severely affecting the time to inspect and classify the mask.

From our Customers point of view, these features can cause shorts, breaks or slivers of material on the substrate. So we protect ourselves and our customers by performing an automated check to detect the presence of such features. As a result we capture these potentially harmful features saving our customers valuable time and money. It may be a surprise that almost 10% of all masks checked have some kind of detections.

Below are a few examples of our detections and customer queries where the data has been fixed and replaced before any expensive material is committed or time is wasted.

Detection example zoomed out

Detection example zoomed out

Closer look: Defect identified

Closer look: Defect identified

Even closer: Defect identifed thanks to MRC

Detection examples Zoomed in again

Detection example defect confirmed

The MRC is not charged separately, it is all part of the first class service our customers can expect from Compugraphics, saving potentially many $’000s and valuable time.

Here are just a couple of quotes from customer who have benefitted from the MRC.

“With the other guys, it is rubbish in, rubbish out, even if it is our fault. With Compugraphics, when we make a mistake, it is rubbish in, gold out”


“Thanks a lot, this is exactly why we prefer you guys, it’s like having an extra inspection and quality Control”

Read more quotes on our page

So when you place an order for any mask with Compugraphics, be safe in the knowledge that we are not just placing your design straight onto a piece of Quartz. We are ensuring that your device or application has every chance of being manufactured and performing exactly how you designed it to.

This kind of dedication is present at every stage of our service or manufacturing operations and is just one reason we can call ourselves the “experts behind the Mask”.

David Muir, Customer Solutions Group Manager

Dave Muir

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