Wednesday, January 16, 2019

Come to Berlin for the EFDS ALD for Industry - 3rd Workshop and Tutorial, March 19-20, 2019

Including Industrial Exhibition and Practical ALD Show

A topical workshop with focus on industrialization and commercialization of ALD for current and emerging market

Atomic Layer Deposition (ALD) is used to deposit ultraconformal thin films with sub-nm film thickness control. The method is unique in the sense that it employs sequential self-limiting surface reactions for growth in the monolayer thickness regime. Today, ALD is a key technology in leading semiconductor technology and the field of application in other leading-edge industries is increasing rapidly. According to market estimates the equipment market alone is currently at an annual revenue of US$ 1.5-1.7 billion (2017) and it is expected to double in the next 4-5 years.

In a European context ALD was invented independently twice in Europe (Russia & Finland) and since the last 15 years Germany has grown to become one of the strongest European markets for ALD in R&D, chemicals, equipment and end users.

The Event will focus on the current markets for ALD and addresses the applications in semiconductor industry, MEMS & Sensors, Battery Technology, Medical, Display, Lightning, Barriers and Photovoltaics.

Sunday, January 13, 2019

AIXTRON Provides Its AIX G5+ C to PlayNitride for Micro LED Production

AIXTRON announced that it has signed a Joint Collaboration Agreement with PlayNitride to accelerate technical and commercial breakthroughs of Micro LED. AIXTRON’s AIX G5+ C MOCVD system will be adopted by PlayNitride for the manufacturing of GaN-based (gallium nitride) Micro LEDs.

PlayNitride has presented Micro LED displays with high resolution and supplied its Micro LED chips to Samsung for the 75-inch Micro LED display demonstrated at CES 2019. By signing a joint collaboration agreement, AIXTRON and PlayNitride will join forces to technically and commercially enable the decisive step forward to unlock the potential markets.
 

Source: LEDinside LINK

Cree and STMicroelectronics Announce Multi-Year Silicon Carbide Wafer Supply Agreement


Cree, Inc. announces that it signed a multi-year agreement to produce and supply its Wolfspeed® silicon carbide (SiC) wafers to STMicroelectronics, a global semiconductor leader serving customers across the spectrum of electronics applications. The agreement governs the supply of a quarter billion dollars of Cree’s advanced 150mm silicon carbide bare and epitaxial wafers to STMicroelectronics during this period of extraordinary growth and demand for silicon carbide power devices.
 
Source: AZoSensorsLINK

AMD shows off 7nm next-gen chips at CES, aims at Intel and Nvidia

Advanced Micro Devices Inc on Wednesday unveiled its next generation smaller and power-efficient computer chip and a graphics processor, aiming at bigger rivals Intel Corp and Nvidia Corp.

 Source: Retuters LINK


Thursday, January 10, 2019

KLA-Tencor Corporation to Change Name to KLA Corporation to Represent the Company's Broader Scope and Optimistic Vision

MILPITAS, Calif., [Jan. 10, 2019] -- KLA-Tencor Corporation (NASDAQ: KLAC), the leading provider of advanced process control solutions, today announced that it will be changing its name to KLA Corporation. At the same time, the company is rebranding and adopting the tagline Keep Looking Ahead™, to indicate KLA’s optimistic view of technology’s impact on the world. 
 
“Our old name and identity have served us well since KLA and Tencor merged in 1997,” said Rick Wallace, president and CEO of KLA. “Our new, simplified name and more contemporary identity will better reflect and more effectively communicate our vision of the future to new employees and new customers—while retaining the strength of our industry-leading brand. Our new brand is designed to signify our confidence in technology’s ability to drive positive change in the world, lifting global society through many avenues including IoT, AI, and other technologies that connect us. KLA’s products and solutions play a key role in enabling these devices and experiences.” 

Leading Provider of Semiconductor Manufacturing Services Selects Veeco's AP300 to Support Aggressive Advanced Packaging Expansion

World’s Largest OSAT Provider Names AP300™ Its Preferred Lithography System Due to Veeco’s Industry-Leading Uptime and Process Performance

PLAINVIEW, New York, Jan. 8, 2019 — Veeco Instruments Inc. (Nasdaq: VECO) announced today that the world’s largest outsourced assembly and test (OSAT) provider has purchased multiple Veeco AP300™ lithography systems. Complementing the OSAT’s previously installed Veeco tools, the AP300 was selected based on its industry-leading uptime and performance with lower total cost of ownership (CoO). This purchase is illustrative of continued strong market demand for Veeco’s lithography systems, given the tools’ ability to handle next-generation advanced packaging process needs including copper (Cu) pillar, wafer-level packaging (WLP), fan-out WLP (FOWLP) and 3D integrated circuit developments.

The AP300 lithography stepper’s winning combination of overlay, resolution, sidewall profile performance and broadband flexibility enables highly automated, cost-effective manufacturing valued by foundries and OSATs for applications such as fan-in WLP, FOWLP, through-silicon via, silicon interposer solder and Cu pillar bumping. Given the strong market growth expected in mobile, IoT and artificial intelligence (AI) applications, OSATs seek to ensure they are competitively positioned to drive customer acquisition and retention. According to Yole, the equipment and materials market for FOWLP alone will expand at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 43 percent to reach $694 million by 2021.

“Increased mobility, IoT, AI and deep learning are seeing strong growth in step with global megatrends, all of which are enabled by technologies like 3D integration and advanced packaging,” noted Peter Porshnev, Ph.D., senior vice president and general manager of Veeco’s Ultratech business unit. “As we grow our customer base, Veeco’s experienced team of technologists continues to work closely with OSATs and foundries to deliver industry-leading innovations that directly address their performance, yield and CoO challenges.”

About Veeco

Veeco (NASDAQ: VECO) is a leading manufacturer of innovative semiconductor process equipment. Our proven MOCVD, lithography, laser annealing, ion beam and single wafer etch and clean technologies play an integral role in producing LEDs for solid-state lighting and displays, and in the fabrication of advanced semiconductor devices. With equipment designed to maximize performance, yield and cost of ownership, Veeco holds technology leadership positions in all these served markets. To learn more about Veeco's innovative equipment and services, visit www.veeco.com.

Sunday, January 6, 2019

Versum Materials report 1,000 CHEMGUARD® GEN III Systems sold

[Versum Materials Newsletter, LINK] An important milestone for the Versum Materials DS&S was realized recently with the sale and commissioning of the onethousandth (1,000) CHEMGUARD® Gen III high-purity, liquid delivery system since its introduction in 2016. The 1,000-plus units are now running in the latest high-volume semiconductor fabs globally with more than 200 molecules now approved for delivery. Built on a legacy of more than 30 years of supplying advanced materials and delivery systems to the worldwide semiconductor and electronics industries, Versum Material’s DS&S team continues to design and build safer, more reliable delivery equipment for high-purity gas and liquid distribution.
 
 
CHEMGUARD 500 is specifically designed for very low vapor pressure precursors. The patented, automa􀆟c solvent purge ensures molecule purity on some of the lowest vapor pressure molecules used in semiconductor manufacturing. A small sample of the molecules approved in a CG500 are: TDMAT, TDEAT, TAETO, TBTDET, TDEAH, TEMAH, TEMAHf, TEMAZr and TPOSL. (From the CHEMGUARD GEN III 500 DATA SHEET)

“The CHEMGUARD Gen III system has been very well received by Versum Materials major customers, especially with its built-in redundancies,” said Jeff Chung, DS&S Asia Sales Manager.

Nvidia may manufacture its 2020 GPUs using Samsung’s 7nm EUV process

According to a new report from a Japanese news source, Nvidia will manufacture its 2020 GPUs using Samsung’s 7nm EUV process. Nvidia is currently using TSMC’s 12nm process for its latest GPU cards. 
In a previous report by DigiTimes, Nvidia was rumored to use TSMC’s non-EUV 7nm process for its cards in 2019, but that may no longer be the case if Nvidia plans to use Samsung’s 7nm EUV process in 2020. It’s possible Nvidia could use TSMC’s 7nm process in 2019 for some of its products and Samsung’s 7nm EUV for others in 2020, but that may not make too much practical sense, as it would make its product line-up complicated to design.

Source: Tom´s Hardware  LINK
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By Abhishekkumar Thakur

Saturday, January 5, 2019

2018 Semiconductor Year in Review by Scotten Jones

Scotten Jones, IC Knowledge. has recently summarized 2018 in an article at SemiWiki. Reportedly, after six years of single digit percentage growth in the overall semiconductor market, 2017 saw almost 22% growth and 2018 year-to-date is up roughly 17% (based on numbers published by the world semiconductor trade statistics). 
The big growth driver the last two years has been surging memory prices driven by high bit demand and tight supply. With additional memory capacity coming on-line, memory supply is expected to ease in 2019 removing the biggest driver of growth. 
Apart from that leading edge logic goes down to three foundries, 10nm process delays at Intel, EUV's entry in the production, 3D NAND growth and DRAM scaling slowdown have become the influencing factors in industry's growth. 
"In spite of slower growth expected for 2019 the industry continues to move forward on technology scaling across all three major product segments. The long term outlook for the semiconductor market and underlying technologies remains strong."

Source: SemiWiki "2018 Semiconductor Year in Review" by Scotten Jones LINK

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By Abhishekkumar Thakur

South Korea continues bold investments in memory sector


South Korea is a global semiconductor powerhouse, with semiconductor output recording an increasing ratio of its total annual exports, surging from 12.6% in 2016 to 17.1% in 2017, and further to 21.2% in the first 11 months of 2018. The significant growth momentum has largely resulted from constant heavy investments by major players Samsung Electronics and SK Hynix in memory solutions development, technology upgrades and capacity expansions, as well as in foundry and even packaging process advancement.

In its latest major investment project, Samsung is building its second semiconductor plant in Pyeongtaek at a total cost of US$27.7 billion to make 3D NAND flash and DRAM, with investment and production scales double those of its first plant in the Korean city. After completion by mid-2019 with official run slated for the second half of the year, the new plant will have monthly capacity of 130,000 wafers for DRAM alone.

Continue reading: DIGITIMES LINK

Friday, January 4, 2019

Nanexas PharmaShell® patent approved in the United States

The US Patent Office has approved Nanexa's patent application for the PharmaShell® drug delivery platform.

Nanexa AB is a nanotechnology drug delivery company focusing on the development of PharmaShell®, which is a new and groundbreaking drug delivery system that is expected to have great potential in a number of medical indications. Within the framework of PharmaShell®, Nanexa has partnership agreements with among others, AstraZeneca.

The US Patent Office has approved Nanexa's patent application on January 1, 2019. The now-approved patent covers the product PharmaShell® as well as the method of its manufacture and formulation of PharmaShell® coated drugs. The approved patent has patent number US 10166198.
 

CEO David Westberg comments:

It is with great satisfaction that I can now conclude that the PharmaShell® patent is approved in the United States. We have always felt secure in our patent situation, but it still means a lot to get it confirmed by the US Patent Office. The US is our largest market and now that we have an approved patent, we can have a more interesting position in discussions with potential partners.

Source : Nanexa (in Swedish, LINK)

Wednesday, January 2, 2019

ASM International received a supplier excellence award from TSMC

[ASM International, LINK] ASM International N.V. (Euronext Amsterdam: ASM) has received a supplier excellence award as one of five equipment suppliers from TSMC for the performance and support of ASM's CVD equipment and technology during 2018. The award was presented to ASM by Dr. C.C. Wei, TSMC's Chief Executive Officer, at the TSMC Supply Chain Management Forum on December 6, 2018 in Taiwan.

The award was received by ASM in recognition of its CVD technology and performance in production at TSMC fabs. During the presentation, TSMC explained three points that contributed to the award to ASM.

1) Close engagement with TSMC and precursor suppliers to innovate process solutions.

2) Continued effort on cost and productivity improvement.

3) Exceptional manpower arrangement for delivery.



"We are very honored to receive this prestigious award from TSMC. On behalf of ASM, I would like to thank TSMC for this recognition," said Chuck del Prado, CEO and President of ASM International. "ASM strives to continuously advance our technology solutions and our partnership with TSMC is of strategic importance to ASM. We are very pleased that TSMC has benefited from the performance of our ALD and Epitaxy deposition tools in its production fabs."

TSMC is the world's largest semiconductor manufacturing foundry. TSMC holds the Supply Chain Management Forum annually to show appreciation for the support and contributions of their suppliers and to recognize outstanding equipment and materials suppliers.

BluGlass enters collaboration with global equipment leader, AIXTRON SE


Australian technology innovator, BluGlass Limited (ASX: BLG) has today announced that it will collaborate with global semiconductor equipment leader, AIXTRON SE (FSE: AIXA), to evaluate BluGlass’ unique remote plasma chemical vapour deposition (RPCVD) technology.

BluGlass has selected the AIX 2800G4-HT system for the scaling of RPCVD to mass production capacities. AIXTRON’s Planetary Reactor® delivers class leading semiconductor film uniformity due to its proprietary dual axis of wafer rotation during deposition. RPCVD technology enables low temperature deposition of III-V nitrides which could potentially improve the performance of devices. The first integration of RPCVD onto the AIX 2800G4-HT will be conducted at BluGlass’ Silverwater facility in Sydney, Australia.

BluGlass’ Managing Director Giles Bourne said today, “We are very pleased to have the support from AIXTRON for this major scaling project of our technology. This is an important step towards demonstrating the commercial viability of RPCVD in large scale manufacturing.”

AIXTRON’s Group Innovation Officer, Dr Ken Teo, adds, “At AIXTRON, we are constantly striving to bring novel technologies onto our platforms in order to provide our customers with advanced capabilities. We want to explore the potential of RPCVD technology for low temperature deposition of nitride layers which may open up new possibilities for opto/electronic devices; we look forward to working with BluGlass in integrating RPCVD and evaluating the technology”.
 
Source: BlueGlass LINK

Saturday, December 29, 2018

Huawei Kirin 990 to be the first prodcut to use TSMC 7nm EUV process

Huawei has become the second-largest client of TSMC and can be the first company adopting the pure-play foundry’s N7+ extreme ultraviolet (EUV) process node manufacturing, likely via the Kirin 990. 
 
Source: Kirin 990 To Be the First Customer to Use a TSMC Process Using EUV LINK
 
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By Abhishekkumar Thakur 


 

Tuesday, December 25, 2018

Intel to get 700 million shekel grant for Israel expansion

Israel will give Intel Corp a 700 million shekel ($185 million) grant in return for a planned $5 billion expansion of its production operations in Israel.

Source: Reuters http://feeds.reuters.com/~r/reuters/businessNews/~3/yEH28mfWrVw/intel-to-get-700-million-shekel-grant-for-israel-expansion-idUSKCN1OO0JD

Monday, December 24, 2018

TRUMPF acquiring VCSEL laser diode maker Philips Photonics

 
TRUMPF GmbH of Ditzingen, near Stuttgart, Germany is acquiring Philips Photonics GmbH of Ulm, Germany, a wholly owned business of Royal Philips of Eindhoven, The Netherlands that provides vertical-cavity surface-emitting laser (VCSEL) technology for datacom, consumer and industrial applications.
 
Established in 2000 as ULM Photonics GmbH and acquired by Philips in 2006, Philips Photonics in November announced its third production capacity expansion in the last three years (to be completed within the next 18 months).

With about 13,400 employees, TRUMPF makes machine tools, laser technology and electronics for industrial manufacturing. The firm says that the acquisition opens up a new market segment for it in addition to its existing business with high-power diode lasers as well as expanding its product portfolio. Employing about 280 people, laser diodes from Philips Photonics are used in, for example, smartphones, digital data transmission, and sensors for autonomous driving. As well as its manufacturing facility in Ulm, Philips Photonics also has sites in Aachen, Germany, Eindhoven in The Netherlands, and sales offices in Shenzhen, Shanghai and Qingdao in China.

“We want to open up new product fields and expand our existing portfolio at a strategically important point,” says TRUMPF’s CEO Nicola Leibinger-Kammüller. Through the acquisition, the firm should expand its access to fast-growing markets in the photonics and digital products sectors.

“Philips Photonics employs a large number of very good developers who have opened up new areas of photonics and who will strengthen our research and development area in the long term,” comments chief financial officer Lars Grünert, member of the group’s management board responsible for the new TRUMPF product sector. “Together, we want to further develop the Photonics division.” In its past fiscal year 2017/18, TRUMPF has invested €337m in R&D (a development ratio of 9.5%).

“Since our foundation in 2000, we have grown strongly. More than half a billion cell phones worldwide are equipped with laser diode technology from Philips Photonics,” notes Philips Photonics business leader Joseph Pankert. Becoming part of TRUMPF “will ensure that the division can continue to grow in a highly innovative company in the future,” he adds.

The acquisition is expected to be completed in second-quarter 2019. Authorities still have to approve the acquisition.

Thursday, December 20, 2018

IBM announcagreement with Samsung to manufacture 7nm microprocessors for IBM

Following Globalfoundries desission to stop at 14nm, IBM today announced an agreement with Samsung to manufacture 7nm microprocessors for IBM Power Systems™, IBM Z™ and LinuxONE™, high-performance computing (HPC) systems, and cloud offerings.The agreement combines Samsung's industry-leading semiconductor manufacturing with IBM's high-performance CPU designs. 
 
 
Source : Yahoo Finance LINK
 
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by Abhishekkumar Thakur

Chinese AMEC 5nm plasma etching tools verified by TSMC

DigiTimes report (LINK) that the Chinese OEM Advanced Micro-Fabrication Equipment (AMEC) announced recently its in-house developed 5nm plasma etching tools have been verified by Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (TSMC). AMEC is already among TSMC's equipment suppliers for the foundry's 28nm, 10nm and 7nm processes.

Earlier in 2018 AMEC Introduced the Primo Nanova® System, which is the Company's first ICP etch Product for Chipmakers' most advanced memory and logic (LINK). Besides ICP AMEC has products based on CCP etch and platforms for TSV Etch (LINK).
 
 AMEC Introduced the Primo Nanova® System (AMEC)

Advanced Micro-Fabrication Equipment Inc. (AMEC)
AMEC is China's leading provider of advanced process technology to global manufacturers of semiconductors and solid-state lighting (SSL) products. Headquartered in Shanghai, the company is an entrenched supplier of dielectric and TSV Etch tools, helping chipmakers build devices at process nodes as low as 7nm. To date, nearly 800 AMEC process units have been positioned at 40 leading-edge semiconductor fabs across Asia. The company is also well established in Europe with AMEC MEMS tools running in production at major IDMs. In addition, with its MOCVD system, the company helps SSL manufacturers build today's most advanced LED products. To learn more about AMEC, please visit www.amec-inc.com.

TSMC’s USD19 billion 3 nm Fab will start production in 2020

TSMC's 3 nm wafer fab: In August, TSMC announced investment of $19 billion to build a 3 nm wafer fab. Today, according to the Taiwanese ‘Economic Daily’ report, TSMC’s 3-nanometer factory passed the environmental assessment. According to the original scheduling, the world’s first 3-nanometer plant is expected to start construction in 2020 and complete equipment installation in 2021. Moreover, it’s expected to be put into operation as early as the end of 2022 and early 2023. At present, the 3nm wafer factory in Tainan Park is estimated to cover an area of 28 hectares. It is located close to TSMC’s 5nm factory.

Source: TSMC’s 3nm Plant Will Start Production in 2020 LINK



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Written by Abhishekkumar Thakur and Jonas Sundqvist

Wednesday, December 19, 2018

The semi equipment market will contract 2019 but grow 20.7 percent to reach an all-time high 2020

TOKYO – December 12, 2018 – Releasing its Year-End Total Equipment Forecast at the annual SEMICON Japan exposition, SEMI, the global industry association representing the electronics manufacturing supply chain, today reported that worldwide sales of new semiconductor manufacturing equipment are projected to increase 9.7 percent to $62.1 billion in 2018, exceeding the historic high of $56.6 billion set last year. The equipment market is expected to contract 4.0 percent in 2019 but grow 20.7 percent to reach $71.9 billion, an all-time high. [Source: SEMI LINK

 
For 2019, SEMI forecasts that South Korea, China, and Taiwan will remain the top three markets, with all three regions maintaining their relative rankings. Equipment sales in South Korea is forecast to reach $13.2 billion, in China $12.5 billion, and in Taiwan $11.81 billion. Japan, Taiwan and North America are the only regions expected to experience growth next year. The growth picture is much more optimistic in 2020, with all regional markets expected to increase in 2020, with the market increasing the most in Korea, followed by China, and Rest of World [Source: SEMI LINK]

After a period of record growth in 2017-18, the semiconductor equipment industry is expected to face a slowdown in 2019. Logic is strong but memory is weak, and the trade issues between the United States and China are a cause for concern. According to a report in Semiengineering (LINK), heading into 2019, there is a shortfall of 200 mm equipment. The industry requires from 2,000-3,000 new or refurbished 200 mm tools to meet fab demand, according to SurplusGlobal. But there are only 500 available 200 mm tools on the market, according to the company. 200 mm tool prices will remain high. 300 mm tool prices are lower than 200 mm tool prices these days
 
For the ALD OEM market the situation is therefore heating up even though the. Currently the top 300 mm ALD equipment companies (ASM, TEL, Lam, Jusung, Wonik IPS, Applied Materials) does not actively support the market with pure play 200 mm products except for Large Batch Furnaces. So if you want a 200 mm single wafer ALD tool today you can buy a 300 mm tool and equip it with 200 mm handling or go to one of the smaller companies like Picosun, Veeco, Beneq, Oxford Instruments, which all have 200 mm ALD cluster products on the market today.
 
 
From presentation "ALD/CVD applications, equipment and precursors in high volume manufacturing" at SEMICON Europa 2018, available on SlideShare LINK.
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Written by Abhishekkumar Thakur and Jonas Sundqvist
 
 
 

Wednesday, December 12, 2018

UNSW and Leadmicro announce a joint initiative to develop next generation high-efficiency solar cells

[Leadmicro News] The University of New-South Wales (UNSW) in Australia, and Jiangsu Leadmicro Nano-Equipment Technology Ltd. (LEADMICRO), a China-based global manufacturer of advanced thin film deposition and etch equipment, have announced a partnership to develop the next generation high-efficiency solar cells based on novel Atomic Layer Deposition (ALD) technology within the frame work of an Arena Project entitled “Advanced high-efficiency silicon solar cells employing innovative atomic scale engineered surface and contact passivation layers”. Mr Warwick Dawson, Director of Knowledge Exchange, Prof. Mark Hoffman, Dean of Faculty of Engineering, Prof. A/Prof Bram Hoex of School of Photovoltaic and Renewable Energy Engineering, as well as Mr. Yangqin Wang, Chairman of the LEAD Group and Dr. Wei-Min Li, CTO of LEADMICRO witnessed the signing ceremony.


Left to right: Research Fellow, Ouyang Zi; Chairman of Wuxi Lead Intelligent Equipment Co. Ltd., Mr. Yanqing Wang; CTO of Jiangsu Leadmicro Nano-Equipment Technology Ltd., Dr Wei-Min LI; Director Knowledge Exchange at UNSW, Warwick Dawson; Dean of Engineering at UNSW, Professor Mark Hoffman; Associate Professor Bram Hoex.

The photovoltaic industry is currently amid the transfer to the technologically superior PERC technology which was developed at UNSW in the late 1980s. According to A/Prof Bram Hoex, who leads the project at UNSW, “A major part of the advantages of the PERC solar cell compared to the incumbent technology is due to the application of ultrathin films which reduce the electronic losses at the non-contacted areas at the rear of the silicon solar cell. It is generally accepted that the next technological node will use so called “passivating contacts” which simultaneously allows for low electronic and resistive losses. These passivating contacts typically consist of a combination of ultrathin films, thus we see that nanoscale thin films will play an increasingly important role in solar cells. ALD allows controlling the growth of thin films at the atomic level and therefore is ideally suited for making these contacts.” In this project, Leadmicro will donate a pilot-scale ALD reactor to UNSW which will be housed at its Solar Industrial Research Facility (SIRF) at UNSW’s Kensington campus. “The fact that we will have a high-throughput reactor available on campus will allow us to very quickly transfer the processes we develop at the lab-scale tools and test their performance at the solar cell device level, so the technology is ready for Leadmicro’s clients to use in high-volume manufacturing” says A/Prof Hoex.

Saturday, December 8, 2018

TSMC to build new 8-inch fab capacity

Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (TSMC) has disclosed plans to build a new 8-inch wafer fab at its manufacturing site in Tainan, southern Taiwan to satisfy robust customer demand.

Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (TSMC) has disclosed plans to build a new 8-inch wafer fab at its manufacturing site in Tainan, southern Taiwan to satisfy robust customer demand. TSMC's last 8-inch fab was established about 15 years ago.

Plans to add a new 8-inch fabrication facility is to meet growing customer demand for specialty process technologies, according to TSMC CEO CC Wei.

Source: DIGITIMES LINK
 
List of TSMC Fabs: LINK




Thursday, December 6, 2018

Qualcomm reveals Snapdragon 8cx, an Intel-class 7-nanometer laptop chip

Qualcomm says that the Snapdragon 8cx will maintain a "connected standby" status that leads to "instant on" connectivity, yet excellent battery life.

Source: VentureBeat LINK
This is then the world’s first 7-nanometer chip for PCs but please have in mind that Intel 10 nm corresponds to Qualcomm 7 nm that is TSMC 7 nm process. Such a 7 nm Snapdragon 8cx wafer has actually been spotted by Anandtech (LINK).

Friday, November 30, 2018

Gooch & Housego Installs Veeco’s IBS System for Advanced Optical Coating Capabilities


PLAINVIEW, New York—Nov. 29, 2018—Veeco Instruments Inc. and Gooch & Housego (G&H), the world’s leading supplier of high quality superpolished optical components today announced the successful installation of Veeco’s SPECTOR® Ion Beam Sputtering (IBS) Optical Coating System at G&H’s Moorpark, Calif. facility. The new capability provided by SPECTOR supports G&H’s expanding portfolio of high-quality optics for ultraviolet, visible and infrared systems used in telecommunications, aerospace and defense, life science and industrial applications.

SPECTOR offers exceptional layer thickness control, enhanced process stability and the lowest published optical losses in the industry, and has become the IBS system of choice for over 200 advanced manufacturing settings worldwide. G&H will use this system to support its expanding portfolio of high-quality optics for UV, visible and infrared systems used across telecommunications, aerospace and defense, life science and industrial applications. 
 
“G&H is at the forefront of engineering a broad range of photonics technologies, leveraging optical coatings to advance crystal growth, electro-optics and fiber optics in next-generation applications,” said Adam Morrow, product line manager at G&H. “As we navigate the increasingly complex specifications required for these processes, we’ve turned to Veeco as a partner that can uphold our long-standing pedigree of high-quality optics.”

G&H’s growing presence in the laser optics landscape builds on the company’s tenured history as a supplier of high-quality photonics components. Complementing G&H’s superpolished surfaces, Veeco offers IBS coatings that achieve very low levels of total loss while maintaining surface roughness quality, density and exceptional environmental stability.


The SPECTOR IBS platform offers exceptional layer thickness control, enhanced process stability, and the lowest published optical losses in the industry. The system is engineered to improve key production parameters, such as target material utilization, optical endpoint control, and process time for cutting-edge optical coating applications. The SPECTOR platform, which is the preferred IBS system in the industry, has been installed in more than 200 advanced manufacturing settings across the world.


“Veeco’s IBS systems allow our customers to achieve the highest precision and thin film process flexibility necessary for successful advanced photonics and next-generation high-growth applications,” added Adrian Devasahayam, Ph.D., vice president and general manager of Veeco’s Advanced Deposition and Etch (AD&E) business. “We’re confident in the SPECTOR system’s ability to provide G&H with the qualitative advantages of IBS technology, including low scatter loss, high film purity, stable deposition rates and film thickness control of less than 0.1 nm in a robust package that significantly boosts throughput and lowers cost of ownership for customers.”


According to BCC Research, the global market for optical coatings is expected to reach $14.2 billion in 2021, up from $9.5 billion in 2016. Key drivers of this growth are emerging applications in commercial and consumer categories, as well as innovative coatings to improve a broad range of existing applications.

GLOBALFOUNDRIES announces industry’s first 300 mm SiGe foundry technology

GLOBALFOUNDRIES Announces Industry’s First 300mm SiGe Foundry Technology to Meet Growing Data Center and High-Speed Wireless Demands

Santa Clara, Calif., November 29, 2018 – GLOBALFOUNDRIES today announced its advanced silicon germanium (SiGe) offering, 9HP, is now available for prototyping on the company’s 300mm wafer manufacturing platform. The move signifies the strong growth in data center and high-speed wired/wireless applications that can leverage the scale advantages of a 300mm manufacturing footprint. By tapping into GF’s 300mm manufacturing expertise, clients can take advantage of increased production efficiency and reproducibility for high-speed applications such as optical networks, 5G millimeter-wave wireless communications and automotive radar.


Globalfoundries Fab 10 in East Fishkill, NY
 
GF is the industry leader in the manufacturing of high-performance SiGe solutions on its 200mm production line in Burlington, Vermont. The migration of 9HP, a 90nm SiGe process, to 300mm wafers manufactured at GF’s Fab 10 facility in East Fishkill, N.Y., continues this leadership and establishes a 300mm foothold for further roadmap development, ensuring continued technology performance enhancements and scaling.
“The increasing complexity and performance demands of high-bandwidth communication systems have created the need for higher performance silicon solutions,” said Christine Dunbar, vice president of RF business unit at GF. “GF’s 9HP is specifically designed to provide outstanding performance, and in 300mm manufacturing will support our client’s requirements for high-speed wired and wireless components that will shape future data communications.”

GF’s 9HP extends a rich history of high-performance SiGe BiCMOS technologies designed to support the massive growth in extremely high data rates at microwave and millimeter-wave frequencies for the next generation of wireless networks and communications infrastructure, such as terabit-level optical networks, 5G mmWave and satellite communications (SATCOM) and instrumentation and defense systems. The technology offers superior low-current/high-frequency performance with improved heterojunction bipolar transistor (HBT) performance and up to a 35 percent increase in maximum oscillation frequency (Fmax) to 370GHz compared to its predecessors, SiGe 8XP and 8HP.

Client prototyping of 9HP on 300mm at Fab 10 in East Fishkill, N.Y. on multi-project wafers (MPWs) is underway now, with qualified process and design kits scheduled in 2Q 2019.

For more information on GF’s SiGe solutions, contact your GLOBALFOUNDRIES sales representative or visit globalfoundries.com.

Tuesday, November 27, 2018

Globalfoundries Fab 11 will ramp straight on to 22nm FD-SOI process for Chinese customers

[Andantech] Fab 11 was/is built as a partnership between GlobalFoundries and the Chengdu municipality. The original plan for the Chengdu fab included two phases with an aggregated capacity of approximately 1,000,000 wafers per year when both operate at full capacity. The first phase was to start operations in 2018 and process around 20,000 wafers per month using mainstream 180/130 nm fabrication technologies originally developed by Chartered for various general-purpose chips. The second phase was to begin operations in 2019, use GlobalFoundries’ 22FDX process and gradually expand its capacity to 65,000 wafers per month. At the same time, one of the terms of the agreement between GF and the Chengdu municipality was to develop an FD-SOI ecosystem locally.
 
 
Based on various reports, GlobalFoundries has failed to land orders for chips to be made using bulk 180/130 nm fabrication processes. As a result, the company will not equip its Fab 11 for those processes, but instead will jump straight to 22FDX. So far, GlobalFoundries has landed orders from six customers in China for 22FDX chips and these clients are currently ramping up their wafers at Fab 1 in Dresden, Germany.

“Given GlobalFoundries' renewed focus on differentiated offerings and discussions with potential clients, we have decided to bypass the original phase-one investment in mainstream process technology,” a GlobalFoundries executive said in an interview with DigiTimes. “In order to meet demand from China for differentiated offerings including our 22FDX technology, we have to revise the original timeline in order to better align capacity.”
 
Source: Andantech LINK


Monday, November 26, 2018

Applied Materials is getting closer to losing its dominance in the Semiconductor Equipment market

According to Seeking Alpha, Applied Materials is getting closer to losing its dominance in the Semiconductor Equipment market
  • Applied Materials recently reported semiconductor equipment revenue growth dropped 16.0% compared to the previous quarter due largely to pushouts in equipment by memory customers.
  • Applied Materials has been losing market share to competitor Tokyo Electron since 2017 and is close to losing its long-held title of semiconductor equipment leader.
  • 60% of Applied Materials revenues was due to purchased by memory companies, but DRAM and NAND capex spend is projected to drop in 2018 and 2019.
 
 
Source: Seekeing Alpha LINK

Friday, November 23, 2018

Top-3 memory chipmakers combined DRAM revenues hit record high in 3Q/201818

The world's top-3 memory IC vendors - Samsung Electronics, SK Hynix and Micron Technology - saw their combined DRAM and flash memory revenues climb to a record high of US$37.3 billion in the third quarter of 2018.



The combined revenues for third-quarter 2018 represented increases of 8% sequentially and 36% on year, thanks mainly to demand for servers and smartphones that come with higher density memory specs.

DRAM chip sales accounted for as high as 71% of the combined memory chip revenues generated by the top-3 vendors in the third quarter of 2018, Digitimes Research indicated. The top-3 memory chip vendors saw their combined DRAM memory sales reach US$26.4 billion in the third quarter, up 10% sequentially.


Source: DIGITIMES LINK