US 20030230512 A1
A chip tray includes a raised storage area formed integrally on a base. Multiple rectangular chip compartments and multiple notches are defined in the raised storage area. Each notch in each corner of the chip compartment communicates with the compartment. When rectangular chips are placed in the chip compartments, each corner of the chips is positioned in the corresponding notch. Therefore the corners of the chip are positioned in the notches to prevent damage to the corners of the chips from ramming into the chip tray.
1. A chip tray for retaining rectangular chips each of which having four corners, comprising:
a base having a top face and a bottom face;
a raised storage area with a top face integrally formed on the top face of the base and multiple rectangular compartments with four corners defined to a depth in the raised storage; and
a recess formed integrally in the bottom face of the base to corresponded to the raised storage area;
wherein the improvement comprises a rectangular notch having a depth the same as the depth of the chip compartments is defined in the raised storage area at each corner of the compartments and communicates with the chip compartment to keep each corner of the rectangular chips from ramming the raised storage.
 1. Field of the Invention
 The present invention relates to a chip tray, and more specifically to a chip tray that has multiple compartments where IC chips are held safely.
 2. Description of Related Art
 The procedures in the IC fabricating industry can be roughly classified in four categories such as integrated circuit design including physical design, semiconductor material fabrication, integrated circuit fabrication on semiconductor material and integrated circuit packaging. Many IC industry plants perform only one of the foregoing groups of activities.
 In the last two categories, multiple chips having the same integrated circuit are cut from a complete wafer having different sizes and then send for packaging. The chips are usually held in a specific chip tray so they can be easily transported to the next location.
 With reference to FIG. 5, the chips are rectangular so the chip tray (50) has multiple rectangular compartments (51) in which the chips (60) are held. However, when the chip tray (50) is transported, the corners of the chips (60) in the compartments (51) ram the sides of the compartments (51) and are often damaged. Therefore the quality of the chip (60) is decreased during transportation of the chip tray (50) filled with chips (60).
 Therefore, the present invention provides a chip tray in which the chips can be safely carried and are not damaged to mitigate or obviate the aforementioned problem.
 An objective of the present invention is to provide a chip tray that can carry the chips safely. Therefore more chips are available for use in final products.
 Other objectives, advantages and novel features of the invention will become more apparent from the following detailed description when taken in conjunction with the accompanying drawings.
FIG. 1 is a perspective view of a chip tray in accordance with the present invention;
FIG. 2 is a top plan view of the chip tray in the FIG. 1;
FIG. 3 is a top plan view of the chip tray in the FIG. 1 with chips populating the chip tray;
FIG. 4 is an enlarged cross sectional side plan view along line 4-4 in FIG. 3; and
FIG. 5 is a top plan view of a conventional chip tray with chips populating the chip tray.
 With reference to FIGS. 1 and 2, a chip tray in accordance with the present invention comprises a base (10), a raised storage area (20), a recess (30) and multiple chip compartments (21). The base (10) has a top face and a bottom face. The raised storage area (20) is integrally formed on the top face of the base (10) and has a top face. The recess (30) is defined in the bottom face of the base to correspond to the raised storage area (20). The chip compartments (21) are defined on the raised storage area (20).
 Each chip compartment (20) is rectangular and has four interior corners (not numbered). A notch (22) is defined in the raised storage area (20) at each corner of each chip compartment (21) and communicates with the chip compartment (21). Each notch (22) has a depth the same as that of the chip compartment (21).
 With reference to the FIG. 3, each rectangular chip (40) having four corners (41) is held in the corresponding rectangular compartment (21). When the chip (40) is retained in the compartment (21), the four corners (41) of each chip (40) are positioned in the four notches (22), as shown in FIG. 4. Therefore the corners (41) of the chips (40) do not touch the raised storage area (20) so they are much less likely to be damaged during transportation of the chip tray to next processing station.
 It is to be understood, however, that even though numerous characteristics and advantages of the present invention have been set forth in the foregoing description, together with details of the structure and function of the invention, the disclosure is illustrative only, and changes may be made in detail, especially in matters of shape, size, and arrangement of parts within the principles of the invention to the full extent indicated by the broad general meaning of the terms in which the appended claims are expressed.