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NY N026262

May 15, 2008



TARIFF NO.: 8486.20.0000

Mr. Jason E. Carrel
Foreign Trade Classification Manager
Lam Research Corporation
4650 Cushing Parkway
Fremont, CA 94538

RE: The tariff classification of semiconductor production equipment from an undetermined country

Dear Mr. Carrel:

In your letter dated April 16, 2008 you requested a tariff classification ruling.

The 2300 Exelan® Plasma Etch Process Module is designed for etching patterns on individual semiconductor wafer layers. The unit is capable of processing 200mm and 300mm wafers. It is a medium ion density, medium pressure dielectric etch system for ≤0.18μm technology applications. Plasma etching (also known as anisotropic dry etching) is achieved in the process module by generation of partially-ionized plasma at low pressures. Free ions within the plasma remove materials from the wafer surface that are not protected by a photo-resistive mask. The reactive gas used in the process chamber will vary depending on whether an insulating, semi-conductive, or conductor (metal) layer is being etched.

The VCR Gas Box is a gas delivery system which allows for the control of the selection, flow and sequencing of reactive and neutral gases. These gases are needed to create the appropriate environment within the process modules. The VCR Gas Box is designed for use with Lam wafer processing tools, i.e., the microwave surface strip process modules and the plasma etch process modules (such as the 2300 Exelan® Plasma Etch Process Module). The unit is capable of regulating the safe supply and mixture of up to twelve separate gases to a process module. While “VCR” is an acronym for “vacuum coupling radiation laboratory” fittings, you indicate that the unit is not designed for radiation emitting gases. The “VCR” refers only to the type of gas fittings used in the Gas Box.

The applicable subheading for the 2300 Exelan® Plasma Etch Process Module and the VCR Gas Box will be 8486.20.0000, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTSUS), which provides for Machines and apparatus of a kind used solely or principally for the manufacture of semiconductor boules or wafers, semiconductor devices, electronic integrated circuits or flat panel displays; machines and apparatus specified in Note 9 (C) to this chapter; parts and accessories: Machines and apparatus for the manufacture of semiconductor devices or of electronic integrated circuits. The rate of duty will be free.

Duty rates are provided for your convenience and are subject to change. The text of the most recent HTSUS and the accompanying duty rates are provided on World Wide Web at http://www.usitc.gov/tata/hts/.

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 Patricia O’Donnell at 646-733-3011.


Robert B. Swierupski

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