FD-SOI Adoption Expands


Fully depleted silicon-on-insulator (FD-SOI) is gaining ground across a number of new markets, ranging from IoT to automotive to machine learning, and diverging sharply from its original position as a less costly alternative to finFET-based designs. For years, [getkc id="220" kc_name="FD-SOI"] has been viewed as an either/or solution targeted at the same markets as bulk [gettech id="31093" c... » read more

How To Build A Better MEMS Microphone


We are seeing a lot of interest in simulating noise, particularly for condenser microphones. With any transducer, noise reduction is always a plus, and with microphones there are two specific applications that need low noise. One is where the microphone is positioned away from the sound source, such as in video calling or when using voice commands with tablet computers. The other is where multi... » read more

Manufacturing Bits: Feb. 20


Hedgehog spin-vortex crystals The U.S. Department of Energy’s Ames Laboratory has discovered a missing piece to enable novel superconductor devices--the hedgehog spin-vortex crystal phase. Superconductors are devices that have zero electrical resistance, making them attractive for a range of applications. But superconductors must be cooled down to temperatures at or near absolute zero on ... » read more

Will China Succeed In Memory?


China's fledging memory makers are expected to reach a major milestone and move into initial production this year, although vendors are already running into various roadblocks. China's domestic vendors are focusing on two markets, 3D NAND and DRAM. In both cases local vendors are either behind in technology, struggling to develop these products, or both. And one vendor recently was hit with ... » read more

The Week In Review: Manufacturing


Fab tools and test Applied Materials reported record revenue and operating profit in its first quarter ended Jan. 28. Compared to the first quarter of fiscal 2017, Applied grew net sales by 28% to $4.20 billion. In the second quarter of fiscal 2018, Applied expects net sales to be in the range of $4.35 billion to $4.55 billion. “AMAT posted F1Q results above guidance as NAND demand, in p... » read more

Race Of Nations


Technology is the next arms race, and this is not just about national defense in the traditional sense. Countries collectively are pouring hundreds of billions of dollars into developing technology for the future, from education to outright grants and seed funding, and they are working with private industry to continue investing in their respective national futures. Which technologies and na... » read more

5 Takeaways From ISS 2018


At the recent Industry Strategy Symposium (ISS) in Half Moon Bay, Calif., there were a multitude of presentations on a number of subjects. The event, sponsored by SEMI, had presentations on the outlook for ICs and equipment. As part of the program, ISS also discussed the latest business and technology trends. In no particular order, here are my five takeaways from ISS: Ranging forecasts ... » read more

What If We Had Bi-Directional RRAM?


The ideal memristor device for neuromorphic computing would have linear and symmetric resistance behavior. Resistance would both increase and decrease gradually, allowing a direct correlation between the number of programming pulses and the resistance value. Real world RRAM devices, however, generally do not have these characteristics. In filamentary RRAM devices, the RESET operation can raise ... » read more

What EUV Brings To The Table


After many years of hearing that EUV is almost ready for prime time, the tide is finally coming in. A decade of slow but steady progress has resulted in exposure tools that can expose on the order of 1,000 wafers a day on a regular basis. This may be shy of the requirements for high volume manufacturing (HVM), but it is certainly more than enough to support solid development programs and pilot ... » read more

Understanding Memory


New semiconductor applications are ever changing and improving our lives, from new smartphones and wearables to healthcare, factory automation, and artificial intelligence. The humble memory chip working in the background plays a critical role in enabling these technologies. For example, that awesome picture you just took would be lost forever without memory. Your computer can’t perform the i... » read more

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