18 August 2006

One of the big problems in effluent treatment for copper interconnect processes is that the waste stream is very dilute. Both CMP and post-electroplating cleans produce large volumes of liquid with relatively low copper content. Since the cost of traditional effluent treatment depends on the waste volume, traditional methods can be very expensive when applied to fab wastes.

A couple of recent product introductions address the problem, creating a concentrated metal-rich solution and a low-metal liquid effluent stream. BOC Edwards' electroplated metals abatement (EPMA) system uses a fluidized bed ion exchange system to reduce waste volumes by 1000:1 or more. Metron's Aquaraeus system addresses copper polishing waste at the point of use, using resin technology to concentrate copper by as much as 200:1.

Posted 10:22 AM

17 August 2006

Score one for the rule of law. US District Judge Anna Diggs Taylor has granted a permanent injunction against the NSA's warrantless eavesdropping program. In particular, she seems unimpressed (complete ruling, PDF) by the administration's claim that the President's role as Commander in Chief gives him broad latitude to authorize such programs.

The Government appears to argue here that, pursuant to the penumbra of Constitutional language in Article II, and particularly because the President is designated Commander in Chief of the Army and Navy, he has been granted the inherent power to violate not only the laws of the Congress but the First and Fourth Amendments of the Constitution, itself.

We must first note that the Office of the Chief Executive has itself been created, with its powers, by the Constitution. There are no hereditary Kings in America and no powers not created by the Constitution. So all “inherent powers” must derive from that Constitution.

Posted 02:28 PM

16 August 2006

5950 words since my last word count, for a year-to-date total of 50,310. Not great, but actually a pretty significant improvement over my pace for the first part of the year.

Posted 09:41 PM

A day after the Israel-Hezbollah cease fire, Hezbollah volunteers are clearing roads and asking residents of southern Lebanon what help they need. Compare the anemic response of the US government after Hurricane Katrina (admittedly a much bigger disaster), and it's easy to see why many Lebanese see Hezbollah as the good guys.

That's how Hamas won the recent election in the Palestinian Territories, too. While Fatah was building Swiss bank accounts, Hamas was building schools and hospitals. Elsewhere, Saudi-funded Islamic schools are sometimes the only affordable schools in countries like Pakistan and Indonesia.

In fundamentalist Islam, religion and the state are inseparable. Most Americans and Europeans see that as a negative, with our heritage of centuries of struggle for freedom of thought. Yet the Western view completely misses the point: people are turning to religious leaders because corrupt political leaders aren't doing their jobs. A generation ago, they might have turned to Communist insurgencies for the same reasons.

We see fundamentalist Islam (and Communism before it) as the problem, and have a long history of supporting corrupt, repressive regimes in the interests of "stability." But the citizens themselves aren't interested in global politics. They want to feed their families and give their kids a better life, and they'll support whatever organizations help them meet those goals. Are we with them, or against them?

Posted 08:16 PM

14 August 2006

I found The Energy Blog while doing research for another photovoltaic project. It seems to be a pretty comprehensive survey of energy-related news, with a heavy focus on renewables. Lots of links, little original coverage.

Posted 06:17 PM


This site is Copyright ©2001-2005 by Thin Film Manufacturing. All Rights Reserved