Integrated circuits are processed on semiconductor wafers. These semiconductor wafers are processed in clean rooms with laminate air flow and tightly controlled requirements on airborne contaminates. To safely and cost effectively transport wafers throughout the semiconductor foundry’s multiple processing steps, wafers are grouped together into a wafer boat or wafer carrier and move from one processing step to another in the carrier. A wafer carrier or boat is a plastic container with slots for 24 or 25 wafers. By default, IC foundries are setup to cost effectively process wafer boat lot sizes. Foundries do not like to have to process wafers in increments less than those contained by a full wafer boat. The foundry will process smaller lot sizes assuming they are not at capacity but they will charge a significant premium to process wafers in this manner.
Production quotations from Triad will often shown minimum order quantities (MOQ). These MOQs are typically, the number of devices that would be yielded from a single wafer boat run at the foundry and processed through the remainder of the supply chain.