Profit Aware Frequency Binning of Semiconductors

Open Access
Vijayakrishnan, Saranya
Graduate Program:
Industrial Engineering
Master of Science
Document Type:
Master Thesis
Date of Defense:
Committee Members:
  • Saurabh Bansal, Thesis Advisor
  • Semiconductors
  • Frequency Binning
  • Maximize Profit
  • Optimization
Semiconductors in the form of Integrated Circuits (ICs) have become an integral part of our technology driven world today. Almost all products that we use, from a coffee maker to mobile phones to advanced computers make use of semiconductor devices or ICs in one way or another. The semiconductor manufacturing process has undergone major technological advances and now state-of-the-art facilities or “Fabs” are used to manufacture ICs in high volumes. Despite these advances, the semiconductor manufacturing process still has a high inherent variability because of which the characteristics of the output products may vary. Thus for a single input we might get multiple product outputs from the same line. Consequently, these manufacturing processes can be considered as co-production processes. All of these products may have the same base functionality with different performance characteristics. We can thus use an excess of high performance devices to satisfy the unfulfilled demand of low performance devices, i.e. we can perform downward-substitution. Semiconductor products like microprocessors are usually divided into different classes or bins based on their operating frequency and all products in a specific class or bin are sold at the same price. This is referred to as Frequency Binning. In this paper we develop an optimization model to improve profit of a firm by determining the optimal frequency bin sizes, the overall production quantity and the allocation of it to different bins considering yield, demand and pricing as parameters.