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Summit Software Refresh


Randy Dammeir – Cohu

Ron Torres – Cohu

Cherry Durfee – Solubit 

Will Smith – Solubit

The Challenge

To refresh Cohu’s Summit Control software and extend this end-of-life product, while maintaining the commonality of architecture by utilizing the original codebase.

The Solution

Solubit’s solution was to version up the LabVIEW 2008 system to LabVIEW 2015 and debug all communication and call function issues post-upgrade.

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About Cohu

Cohu offers the broadest portfolio of equipment and services for back-end semiconductor manufacturing, including a one-stop shop for test and handling equipment, thermal subsystems, interface solutions, vision inspection & metrology, and MEMS test solutions.

Cohu’s enhanced product portfolio gives their customers the best possible combination of technologies to match their business and technical needs, focused on increasing yield, reducing the cost of test, and accelerating time-to-market.

Summit Test Handler

Cohu has 50+ years of semiconductor test expertise designing and manufacturing pick-and-place, gravity feed, test-in-strip handlers, MEMS test cells, and turret-based test handling and back-end finishing equipment for ICs, LEDs, and discrete components.

Their test handlers support a variety of package sizes and device types, including automotive, mobile, power, micro-electromechanical systems (MEMS), and microcontrollers, among others. 

The Summit software along with the PXI code developed with Solubit is utilized on the Summit Test Handler. This product is one of Cohu’s thermal chip testing systems. 

Key Application Features

A key feature of this application is the communication with the hardware, relaying the information to the user interfaces.

This system has two user interfaces: 

One is a user interface that the customer sees and interacts with daily and was not edited by Solubit. It is a c based code that relays information from the user to the Summit program. Solubit was able to refresh the other code without having this section of the project available. The second is the diagnostic terminal. The diagnostic terminal is a LabVIEW program, refreshed by Solubit. The diagnostic terminal UI is shown below. It was used to troubleshoot most of the connection issues that presented post-upgrade.

Software Refresh Application UI
Product Life Extension

The goal of this software refresh project was to extend the life of Cohu’s product beyond what customers thought was possible. In extending the life of the product, customers save CapEx by continuing the utilization of tools that had reached or exceeded ROI. Costs for retooling, along with the downtime that would be present on the line were also saved. 

Solubit’s Support-Driven Approach

The biggest hurdle in this project was selecting which version of LabVIEW to utilize in the upgrade. As an NI Integration Partner, Solubit was able to sift through several version options and develop a strong rationale behind our version recommendation. The LabVIEW 2008 codebase relied heavily on functions not supported by newer LabVIEW versions. Our team selected LabVIEW 2015 because it was the newest version that would support these outdated functions. 

However, once upgraded, connection issues were presented. The list of channels was scrambled and required tedious remote debugging. Our engineers went through 36 channels and reviewed the test panel to group the outputs correctly. This process resulted in each sensor being sorted into its corresponding channel and the general descrambling of communication between the new controller card and test operator interface.


The Only Company with the Expertise on the Entire Test Cell and Inspection
Cohu offers the broadest portfolio of equipment and services for back-end semiconductor manufacturing, including a one-stop-shop for test and handling equipment, thermal subsystems, test contacting, vision inspection & metrology, and MEMS test solutions.