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NY C80385

October 23, 1997

CLA-2-84:RR:NC:1:103 C80385


TARIFF NO.: 8479.89.8578

Ms. Peg Verranault
Balzers Process Systems, Inc.
25 Sagamore Park Road
Hudson, NH 03051

RE: The tariff classification of the ClusterLineTM 200 from Switzerland

Dear Ms. Verranault:

In your letter dated September 30, 1997 you requested a tariff classification ruling.

Literature submitted with your ruling request describes the ClusterLineTM 200 as a single wafer, multi-chamber pretreatment and metallization system for use in by the semiconductor industry. The machine incorporates a central wafer handling vacuum station with integrated wafer alignment, buffer and cooler, and a magnetically driven robot arm capable of handling wafers from 4 to 8 inches in diameter. Clustered around the central wafer handling station are several process chambers in which the following operations can be performed:

- a degas process utilizing a quartz heater to desorb chemiadsorbed water films;

- an ICP soft etch process utilizing plasma enhanced RF;

- an RTA/RTP process for rapid thermal annealing with high temperature uniformity and stability;

- PVD sputter processes utilizing a wafer chuck with integrated temperature control, a gas conduction backside heater, and a planar magnetron sputter source.

As typically configured, the ClusterLineTM 200 features a degas chamber, a soft etch chamber, and three sputter coating chambers for depositing thin films of titanium, titanium nitride, and aluminum respectively. It is capable of processing more than 42 wafers per hour.

The applicable subheading for the ClusterLineTM 200 will be 8479.89.8578, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTS), which provides for machines and mechanical appliances having individual functions, not specified or included elsewhere (in chapter 84): other machines and mechanical appliances: other: other: machines for processing semiconductor materials; machines for production and assembly of diodes, transistors and similar semiconductor devices and electronic integrated circuits...: physical deposition apparatus including sputtering and E-beam apparatus. The rate of duty will be free.

This ruling is being issued under the provisions of Part 177 of the Customs Regulations (19 C.F.R. 177).

A copy of the ruling or the control number indicated above should be provided with the entry documents filed at the time this merchandise is imported. If you have any questions regarding the ruling, contact National Import Specialist Alan Horowitz at 212-466-5494.


Robert B. Swierupski

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