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Process Improvement at BOC Edwards

Summary: Responding to the 2001 downturn in the semiconductor industry, BOC Edwards (BOCE), a major supplier of equipment and materials to the industry, turned to Six Sigma to reduce costs and improve quality at its Medford, Oregon electronic gas purification and filling facility. The plant chose tungsten hexafluoride gas for its Black Belt project because of its importance to the semiconductor industry. Statistical tools were applied to the gas analysis laboratory by performing a measurement systems analysis. The optimized analytical methods reduced standard deviations and prevented the rejection of product because of measurement error. Six Sigma methods developed in this project were applied to all Medford�s gas production processes, resulting in cost reductions and material improvements. Additionally, teams were able to apply kaizen skills learned during the project to solve other plant challenges.

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  • Topics: Process Management, Lean, Statistical Process Control (SPC), Six Sigma
  • Keywords: Process improvement,Kaizen,Cost management,Case study,Statistical process control (SPC),Quality improvement (QI),Six Sigma
  • Author: Zievis, Brian
  • Journal: Six Sigma Forum Magazine