College - Author 1

College of Engineering

Department - Author 1

Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering Department

Degree Name - Author 1

BS in Industrial Engineering

College - Author 2

College of Engineering

Department - Author 2

Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering Department

Degree - Author 2

BS in Manufacturing Engineering

College - Author 3

College of Engineering

Department - Author 3

Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering Department

Degree - Author 3

BS in Industrial Engineering



Primary Advisor

Tali Freed, College of Engineering, Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering Department

Additional Advisors

Xuan Wang, College of Engineering, Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering Department


The objective is to work with Onto Innovations, a leading provider of semiconductor metrology and manufacturing solutions, to develop a system that safely installs a 250lb optics plate into the Atlas III: one of their metrology machines. Based in Milpitas, CA, Onto Innovations utilizes a variety of operations to create different products and assembles each product on site. The 250lb optics plates are WIP that are transferred between fixtures and the Atlas III using a combination of lifts and human workers. The WIP have long lead times, high tolerances, and large costs associated with their manufacturing process.

Onto Innovations identified a specific transfer in the WIP where they would like this team to find a safer and more efficient solution for the product and workers. Onto Innovations currently have rough solutions mocked up, but no significant progress has been made due to a lack of manpower. The Director of Operations Engineering, Jon, would like the team to re-address the problem and design a new process, lifting tool, and/or fixture to safely conduct the operation. A preliminary budget of $5,000 has been set for the project, and Onto Innovations expects a final product by the end of December 2019 that will work reliably, safely, and efficiently.

The team conducted a preliminary analysis and developed three distinct solutions. The primary solution is designing and manufacturing a small, portable lift that will be temporarily installed inside the Atlas III. The secondary solution is to modify the current lift Onto Innovations uses by changing the leg design and weight distribution. The tertiary solution is to create an SOP for the current installation process, as this will entail no product design or product modification. Further development of the preliminary analysis concluded in the team moving forward with the primary solution.

Using a mechanical design approach and extensive ergonomic consideration, the team developed a lift that bolts up into the Atlas III frame and meets all Onto Innovations’ requirements. The design process entailed several revisions to the lift, including the redesign of major assemblies. However, once a detailed prototype design had been developed, the team transitioned into manufacturing. Three weeks of machining and welding lead to the creation of the first prototype, which was then tested for fitment and maneuverability.

The team delivered the underhung lift to Onto Innovations, and after a run-through of the process and a test fit, the team realized the positive and negative attributes of the design. Some aspects, such as the trolley that rides underneath the i-beam, need some additional design considerations. However, Onto Innovations was satisfied with the initial prototype and look forward to building 3 upon the team’s work to develop a product that will address the issues found in testing. In addition to the prototype, an SOP and full CAD model were delivered to Onto Innovations so that the design can be modified, remanufactured, and the process can be solidified.