October 24, 2003
Sumitomo Heavy Industries, Ltd. (SHI) completed the expansion of production capacity for XY stages at Okayama Works (Kurashiki, Okayama) recently and put it into operation now.
Stage factory at Okayama Works has been manufacturing XY stages for LCD panel production systems. With this completed expansion, the floor space of the clean room has been enlarged from 2,520 m2 to 5,870 m2 and production capacity of XY stages at Okayama Works has been increased from 35 units to 100 units per year. Corresponding to increased demands for large-sized systems, the stage factory added two new gantry cranes to meet the requirement for production of large-type XY stages which are suitable for production of 6th and 7th generation panels. In addition, the factory is provided with an air floating type carriage with a loading capacity over 30 tons for transportation to and from the existing area. Together with other upgrades, they all contribute to the production of large-type precision systems. The expanded production area can be divided into three independent spaces which allow different climate controls and it can be used for assembling various products, such as ultra-precision stages for semiconductor production systems, at the same time.
Sumitomo Heavy Industries, Ltd. started the production of precision XY stages to be incorporated into the production and inspection systems for semiconductors and LCD's in its Tanashi Works (Nishitokyo, Tokyo) as bases since 1998. Since last year, demands for large-sized LCD related stages increased very rapidly. To meet this increased demand, a new factory was completed in the Okayama Works at the beginning of this year which is dedicated to the production of XY stages for LCD market.