Trademarks & Technology

KDF Cathodes:

KDF has an active ongoing cathode development program encompassing theoretical simulation, mechanical design, empirical measurements and process testing on actual tools. All existing cathodes have been theoretically modeled using a sophisticated simulation package, as well as magnetically mapped and process-tested. New cathode designs for improved uniformity and target utilization, such as the Mark III, are undergoing beta testing at present and will be introduced shortly.

NEW – LMM Linear Moving Magnet Cathode:

The linear moving magnet sputter cathode, a newly, patent applied for, full-face erosion rectangular design is available for all KDF systems. The LMM offers high material utilization with minimized re-deposition resulting in reduced particulates. The LMM enhanced design advances the capability to work in DC pulse reactive sputter mode with all materials. A Magterial version of the LMM is available providing the ultimate in utilization and lifetime when sputtering magnetic materials such as Nickel.

Mark II:

Formerly a MRC cathode, KDF has since tuned and perfected this magnetron cathode which is ideally used for dielectric materials such as SiO2, or for reactive depositions of materials such as indium-tin oxide.

Mark III:

KDF’s second-generation cathode has an improved magnet design for better uniformity and longer lifetime compared to the Mark II.

X Series:

Now KDF’s most popular systems 600 and 900 series systems can have this new series of KDF cathodes, which have been lengthened from 15 inches to 17 inches, offering, improved uniformity over the entire pallet. The X Series cathodes are available in both Planar and Inset cathode form.

Inset Cathode:

Since KDF’s purchase of MRC’s batch business in 1998 KDF has made many improvements to the original Inset design for high uniformity and high utilization of material. KDF has also created new Inset Cathodes that have increased sizes for the standard batch tools. The KDF 744 and 844 tools have Inset Cathodes up to 30.5 inches in length. The clamped material design can accommodate most metal and all precious metal types.

Focest Cathode:

This was originally developed for Al deep trench fill. It offers great uniformity, rate and material utilization as well. This cathode has special applications in the 600/900 system family.

Magterial Cathode:

This planar-type cathode allows magnetron sputtering of ferrous metals such as nickel and iron at high rates and high uniformities. The cathode field strength is high enough to allow use of quarter- inch thick bonded magnetic targets, thus providing a relatively long target life for these materials.

Other KDF Advances:

ERPP Enhanced rotary planetary pallet:

KDF’s exclusive and innovative design provides greatly improved wafer uniformities in our complete line of 900 series systems. Along with KDF’s new cathodes this pallet option can achieve better than +/- 1% uniformities across the pallet and better than 0.5% repeatability’s between runs for dielectrics such as SiO2 and TiO2, compared with traditional pallet uniformities of +/- 15-20% for such materials.


The band magnetron cathode is a highly complex device, which is used as an etching source in the following KDF products: BMC 600, MIE 720 and the Aries system. This etch source offers extremely high etch rates with relatively low damage to sensitive devices due to the dense ion flux but low ion energies produced by the BMC.