April 15, 2002


2001 Award to Tungsten Business for Advanced ALTUS ® System Marks Sixth Supplier Excellence Award from TI

SAN JOSE, Calif., April 15, 2002—Novellus Systems Inc. (Nasdaq:NVLS), the productivity and innovation leader in thin-film deposition and surface preparation technology for the global semiconductor industry, today announced that its Tungsten Business has received a 2001 Supplier Excellence Award from Texas Instruments (TI). The business unit was recognized for the low cost of ownership and excellent uptime of its ALTUS ® tungsten tool, as well as for the ALTUS system's extendibility to future device generations. Texas Instruments will formally present the award to Novellus chairman and CEO, Richard S. Hill, at the company's quarterly employee meeting this afternoon.

"Texas Instruments Incorporated is pleased to recognize the Novellus Tungsten Business Unit with our Supplier Excellence Award for 2001," said Jeff McLaughlin, Texas Instrument's Director of Wafer Fab Capital Equipment Procurement in the company's Worldwide Procurement and Logistics organization. "The Novellus ALTUS is recognized as a true workhorse throughout the installed base at TI, exhibiting excellent performance and a competitive cost of ownership. The added benefit of extendibility to future technologies has made the ALTUS a top pick in TI's advanced production wafer fabs."

The annual TI Supplier Excellence Award honors firms whose dedication and commitment in supplying products and services meet the company's high standards for excellence. Recipients are an elite group of suppliers chosen for their exemplary performance in the areas of cost, environmental responsibility, technology, responsiveness, assurance of supply and quality. This is the sixth time that Novellus has received the Supplier Excellence Award from TI since it was first implemented in 1984. The company is one of a handful that have been recognized by TI on three or more occasions.

The ALTUS system's claim to extendibility centers on a Novellus innovation called Pulsed Nucleation LayerTM deposition, or PNLTM. An atomic layer deposition (ALD) technique used to build tungsten plugs, PNL uses very short dosage and purge intervals in the CVD reactor to deposit an extremely thin tungsten film nucleation layer at rates that are 3-4 times faster than conventional ALD. The resulting film has excellent step coverage (>95%) and superior smoothness compared to standard CVD tungsten nucleation, and process extendibility to <50 nanometers. The PNL process is accomplished in the same ALTUS chamber used to complete the subsequent CVD plug fill.

"Our Concept Two ® ALTUS and Concept 3 ® ALTUS systems have performed to the high standards demanded by TI, offering them the greatest capital productivity and system availability possible in a production environment," said Karl B. Levy, vice president and general manager of Novellus' Tungsten Business. "We are grateful for this recognition, and look forward to continued collaboration with TI as we use PNL technology to extend the capabilities of the ALTUS platform."

About Novellus Systems:
Novellus Systems Inc., an S&P 500 company, manufactures, markets and services advanced deposition and surface preparation equipment for today's advanced integrated circuits. The company's products are designed for high-volume production of advanced, leading-edge semiconductor devices at the lowest possible cost. Headquartered in San Jose, Calif., with subsidiaries throughout the United States as well as in the United Kingdom, France, Germany, The Netherlands, Ireland, Israel, Italy, India, China, Japan, Korea, Malaysia, Singapore and Taiwan, Novellus is a publicly traded company on the Nasdaq stock exchange (Nasdaq: NVLS) and a component of the Nasdaq-100 Index ® . Additional information about the company is available on Novellus' home page at

Pulsed Nucleation Layer and PNL are trademarks of Novellus Systems, Inc.

ALTUS, Concept Two and Concept 3 are registered trademarks of Novellus Systems, Inc.