Wilton at a glance
With over 1,600 employees, ASML Wilton is an important competency center, specializing in critical technologies that advance the performance of our lithography and metrology systems. It’s also our only in-house optical fabrication site.
Average years of service
Our technology in Wilton
In Wilton, we work on mechatronics modules, optics, and optical sensors and measurement systems that are critical to both our lithography machines and our metrology and inspection systems.
In Wilton, we design, test and assemble two crucial modules of our lithography systems: the reticle handler and the reticle stage. These two modules move and hold the blueprint of the chip pattern that will be printed (known as a ‘mask’ or ‘reticle’).
The reticle handler operates with surgical precision to carefully move its priceless payload between locations in the machine, without dropping or distorting it. This sophisticated robot is in constant motion and must account for vibrations that are greater than its position accuracy requirements. It transfers the reticle within 20-25 micrometers of the same location, every time, yet the floor vibrates more than half a meter per second squared.
It’s a complex engineering challenge, which becomes increasingly difficult with ASML’s next-generation EUV lithography tools. Here a symphony of robots operates in parallel to move the reticle into and out of the vacuum chamber. For every one million movements, the reticle handler can’t generate more than one particle that lands on the reticle.
Once the reticle is received, the reticle stage securely holds it in place, without distorting or allowing it to move by more than a few picometers. The completely magnetically levitated stage accelerates at more than 15 g, more than three times the g-force experienced by a fighter jet pilot at takeoff, up to a constant velocity of more than three meters per second. It positions the reticle within fractions of nanometers in all six degrees of freedom at full speed.
The motors that propel the reticle stage generate more than 10,000 newton (N) of thrust force, which would be like dropping a car onto the reticle stage every time it accelerates. It does this billions of times over its lifetime without damaging itself or the reticle, or generating any particles that might contaminate the air.
Optical sensors and metrology systems
In Wilton, we also develop sensors that bring together the best in complex optical designs, along with optomechanics, electronics and software to perform sub-nanometer measurements to keep ASML’s systems operating at peak performance. Optical sensors are found throughout our lithography, metrology and inspection systems.
As chip patterns continue to shrink, we push our optical sensor designs to extremes. Advancements focus on reducing measurement time, while capturing larger datasets that help increase a system’s precision. This requires our Wilton colleagues to push the boundaries for optics, including state-of-the-art polishing and coating technologies, as well as ultra-fast precision mechatronics.
Our Wilton colleagues make the science of polishing low-aberration optics an art, using advanced equipment only available at a few companies worldwide. Optics worth a quarter of a million euros are polished within two orders of magnitude more precisely than eyeglasses.
Wilton also specializes in optical contacting of very large surfaces. By achieving an extremely flat surface, two pieces of glass are fused together to form an indestructible bond, without any glue. This is done on a grander scale than any other industry.
ASML’s sensors must also withstand extreme wear and tear conditions. Wilton has more than 15 chambers that make up its robust coating capabilities. Its diamond-like carbon coating is like those used on military aircraft cockpit glass.
Working in Wilton
Located in southwestern Connecticut, Wilton boasts a charming environment of historic buildings, beautiful wooded areas and serene coastlines. The region offers upscale residential communities and amenities and is also near thriving global corporations and metropolitan centers.
Idyllic New England community
Wilton is situated in the heart of the New England region of the United States. The birthplace of America, New England has a rich history, and offers numerous cultural attractions, scenic villages and outdoor adventures. From white sand beaches to panoramic mountain views, people can enjoy many diverse experiences within a single day.
Wilton has also been named one of the best place places to live in Connecticut and offers an abundance of restaurants, parks and high-rated public schools, making it an ideal location for singles and families. It’s located along the Long Island Sound, so visitors and residents enjoy a unique juxtaposition of historic, colonial style buildings set alongside modern, cutting-edge companies who specialize in the latest technological developments.
Fairfield County culture and more
Wilton is situated within Fairfield County, which is Connecticut’s most populous and fastest-growing regions. It contains four of the state’s largest cities – Bridgeport, Stamford, Norwalk and Danbury. As a result of its size, it offers a rich, diverse culture as well as a wide range of attractions and amenities. There are no shortages of zoos, museums and aquariums, and other activities to enjoy leisure time outside of work.
Connecticut offers easy access and travel time to many surrounding cities. It’s a mere 55 miles to New York City from Wilton, and Philadelphia or Boston are within easy reach for a long weekend.
Ample public transportation offers a range of ways to commute or visit nearby communities. The Metro Train North conveniently connects New York, Connecticut and New Jersey. The MTA train provides access to surrounding towns, and the city bus and shuttles cover shorter distances within Wilton.
See what others have to say
Read about ASML employees working in Wilton.
Anusha Thota, Lead Software Engineer
"With the support of my ASML team, I feel like anything is possible.”
Mark Schuster, Department Manager
“As we’re going into more cutting-edge technology going toward the future of lithography, we’re develop new systems here that are something that’s never been done in the world before, so we need every type of engineer.”
Jean Pierre Clarke, Production Engineer
"Every morning I come to work, I feel like I'm doing something productive and using my education to make a positive change in the world."
News & stories
Students see new lab
Connecticut Post: Students from the Danbury Grassroots Academy took a tour of the new Test and Measurement Lab at ASML in Wilton.