Novellus Launches Gamma Express
July 10, 2006

San Jose, Calif. - July 10, 2006 - Novellus Systems, Inc. (Nasdaq: NVLS), today introduced GAMMA Express, the newest in its line of market-leading photoresist dry strip systems for 300 mm wafer processing. A single product platform for both front-end-of-line (FEOL) and back-end-of-line (BEOL) applications, GAMMA Express provides the highest levels of technology, reliability and productivity for bulk strip and high dose implant strip (HDIS) at the 65nm and 45nm nodes.

"As our customers look to extend strip technology to advanced nodes, they need tools that continue to deliver high reliability and productivity," said Damo Srinivas, vice president and general manager of Novellus' Surface Integrity Group. "GAMMA Express builds on previous generations of the production-proven GAMMA platform to address HDIS strip challenges at advanced nodes. It is the first tool to enable a path to 45nm without sacrificing reliability or productivity."

Currently in beta evaluation with a large memory manufacturer in Asia, GAMMA Express will be in production release in the fourth quarter of 2006. The market-leading 300 mm GAMMA has an installed base of more than 160 systems processing more than 12 million wafers per month. It is in production with eight of the top 10 capex spenders.

Like all Novellus tools, GAMMA Express provides chipmakers with state-of-art technology and superior productivity, delivering value to customers where they need it most. New elements of GAMMA Express serving these needs include:

Innovative Technology


  • Low silicon loss implant strip and non-oxidizing strip chemistries for compatibility with advanced Silicide and ultra low-k films, in addition to support for conventional bulk strip, HDIS, and C4 packaging applications. This application diversity is enabled by five active RF stations and a tailored Universal Gas Distribution system.



  • Single digit particle performance with all minimum contact area (MCA) components including load locks with MCA cassette, ceramic MCA blades, spindle with MCA fingers, and process, overash and preheat pedestals to help customers repeatedly achieve lower defectivity.


Trusted Productivity


  • High composite productivity, with more than 300 wph for bulk strip and 150 wph for HDIS, driven by a new proprietary source technology combined with Novellus' Multi-Station Sequential Processing (MSSP) architecture.



  • High system availability--with short mean time off line (MTOL) and high mean time between failures (MTBF)--enabled by state-of-the-art direct drive wafer handling, a new open frame architecture for easier serviceability and Novellus' comprehensive global infrastructure. Novellus provides easy access to parts and diagnostic tools with a network of more than 30 spares and service locations across the globe. Hardware, process and software specialists are available 24 hours every day to help customers decrease risk and increase productivity even further.


About Novellus:

Novellus Systems, Inc. (NASDAQ: NVLS) is a leading provider of advanced process equipment for the global semiconductor industry. The company's products deliver value to customers by providing innovative technology backed by trusted productivity. An S&P 500 company, Novellus is headquartered in San Jose, Calif. with subsidiary offices across the globe. For more information please visit

"Safe Harbor" Statement under the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995:

This press release contains forward-looking statements within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended, including the statement regarding the GAMMA Express production release in the fourth quarter of 2006. Forward-looking statements are subject to risks and uncertainties that may cause actual results to differ materially from those contemplated by the forward-looking statements. Such risks and uncertainties include, but are not limited to, engineering and design flaws or operational difficulties that limit productivity; as well as other risks indicated in our filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). For more details, please refer to our SEC filings and the amendments thereto, including our Annual Report on Form 10-Kfor the year ended December 31, 2005, our Quarterly Report on Form 10-Q for the quarter ended April 1, 2006 and our Current Reports on Form 8-K. Forward-looking statements are made and based on information available to us on the date of this press release, and we assume no obligation to update them.

GAMMA Express is a trademark of Novellus Systems, Inc.