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Method and apparatus for determining the center and orientation of a wafer-like object

Image Number 3 for United States Patent #5822213.

A device and method for determining the center and orientation of a circular workpiece such as a semiconductor wafer. A laser diode projects a sheet of light onto a linear array of charge coupled devices which measures light intensity as a semiconductor wafer is rotated with its outer periphery intersected by the sheet of light. From a plot of light intensity data versus position at the wafer edge, a derivative of such plot can be calculated to locate an orientation notch or flat in the edge of the wafer. Also, from the plot of light intensity versus edge position it is possible to locate the center of the wafer relative to a rotation axis of a spindle on which the wafer is supported.

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