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Apparatus for and method of transporting substrates to be processed

Image Number 12 for United States Patent #6368040.

A substrate transporting apparatus includes a wafer transfer arm 10 for carrying a plurality of semiconductor wafers W being processed horizontally, a pitch changer 20 for carrying the wafers W at predetermined intervals vertically and a posture changing device 30 positioned between the wafer transfer arm 10 and the pitch changer 20, for changing the posture of the wafers W to the horizontal and vertical arrangements. The pitch changer 20 includes a first holding part 21A and a second holding part 21B which are adapted so as to elevate relatively to each other. The wafers W are held by either one of the holding parts 21A, 21B at the predetermined intervals. The posture changing device 30 has a pair of holders 31 between which the semiconductor wafers W is interposed. The holders 31 are respectively provided, on their sides opposing each other, with a plurality of holding grooves 32A, 32B for retaining the wafers W independently. With the arrangement, the whole apparatus can be small-sized to improve throughput and yield of products.

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