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Nearfield Instruments (NFI) has secured additional funding from Invest-NL, Innovation Industries and TNO. The Rotterdam-based manufacturer of semiconductor metrology equipment will use the capital injection to advance its production capabilities and strengthen its product portfolio.
Founded in 2016, NFI builds atomic force microscopes (AFMs) that create high-resolution 3D images of wafer surfaces by scanning them with many needles in parallel. The TNO spinoff claims a 100-fold throughput advantage over other automated single-probe AFMs targeted for in-line metrology. This high sampling rate helps semiconductor manufacturers determine lot-to-lot, wafer-to-wafer and intra-wafer process variations.
The funding “will allow us to enhance our series production capabilities following the successful completion of our customer’s assessment of our first in-line process control product Quadra. Furthermore, this investment enables us to speed up bringing our second product to the market, being non-destructive subsurface nano-scale metrology,” says NFI CEO Hamed Sadeghian.
On this occasion, national investment bank Invest-NL is investing 11 million euros in NFI. The size of the follow-up investments by Innovation Industries and TNO hasn’t been disclosed.