KLA Careers

Plasma & Surface Physics Research Scientist

Company Overview

Calling the adventurers ready to join a company that's pushing the limits of nanotechnology to keep the digital revolution rolling. At KLA, we're making technology advancements that are bigger—and tinier—than the world has ever seen.

Who are we?  We research, develop, and manufacture the world's most advanced inspection and measurement equipment for the semiconductor and nanoelectronics industries. We enable the digital age by pushing the boundaries of technology, creating tools capable of finding defects smaller than a wavelength of visible light. We create smarter processes so that technology leaders can manufacture high-performance chips—the kind in that phone in your pocket, the tablet on your desk and nearly every electronic device you own—faster and better. We're passionate about creating solutions that drive progress and help people do what wouldn't be possible without us.  The future is calling. Will you answer?


Group / Division

With over 40 years of semiconductor process control experience, chipmakers around the globe rely on KLA to ensure that their fabs ramp next-generation devices to volume production quickly and cost-effectively. Enabling the movement towards advanced chip design, KLA's Global Products Group (GPG), which is responsible for creating all of KLA’s metrology and inspection products, is looking for the best and the brightest research scientist, software engineers, application development engineers, and senior product technology process engineers.

The Broadband Plasma Division (BBP) provides market-leading patterned wafer optical inspection systems for leading-edge IC manufacturing. Logic, foundry, and memory customers depend on BBP products to detect yield-critical defects for process debug and excursion monitoring at advanced process nodes.    

BBP flagship products include the 29xx and 39xx series which leverage Broadband Plasma technology to capture a wide range of defects with ultimate sensitivity at the optical inspection speeds needed for inline defect monitoring.



Conduct feasibility investigations to provide valuable guidance for KLA-Tencor's roadmap in optical inspection systems.

Develop plasma models aimed at the cleaning of optical elements.  Measure efficacy of different plasma cleaning techniques for the mitigation and cleaning of carbon or other types of deposition. Evaluate and recommend preventive methods. This work requires both the ability to work independently and to work in close collaboration people from a range of organizations. The outcome will provide guidance to characterize environments and understand the optical effects of materials interaction and effects on contamination cleaning to maintain optical system performance.

  • Model the operation of low temperature plasma sources.
  • Developing simulation codes for plasma cleaning parameters gases, (partial) gas pressures, gas mixtures, etc., on selected optical surfaces
  • Develop kinetic and chemical surface effects. Aimed at the cleaning of optical elements
  • Collaborate others to develop plans and then execute validation and benchmarking of modeling results.
  • Collaborate with the other R&D and engineering teams to model development hardware to speed diagnosis of operating characteristics
  • Collaborate with the other R&D and engineering teams to define modeling plans that explore the potential design space for implementation in future products


We are searching for a candidate with a strong background in computational modeling of plasmas. Relevant experience should include experience in some of these areas and a good intuition about the physical processes being modeled. Especially important is the ability to define detailed modeling and validation plans from high level requirements. Other relevant areas of experience include:

  • Low temperature plasma and plasma kinetic simulations.
  • Comsol, ANSYS
  • Simulation of ion-matter, radical interactions.
  • Familiarity with thermal modeling and radiative heat transfer
  • Familiarity with Atomic Spectroscopy methods and data analysis
  • Familiarity with DC discharge plasmas, RF plasmas
  • Familiarity with surface science

Minimum Qualifications

PhD or equivalent in Physics, physical sciences or engineering with a strong background in modeling and model validation.

Equal Employment Opportunity

KLA is an Equal Opportunity Employer. Applicants will be considered for employment without regard to age, race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, protected veteran status, disability, or any other characteristics protected by applicable law.

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