Foundries See Mixed Future


Amid a tumultuous business environment, the silicon foundry industry is projected to see steady growth in a number of process segments in 2017. As in past years, the foundry market is expected to grow faster than the overall IC industry in 2017. But at the same time, the IC industry—the foundry customer base—continues to witness a frenetic wave of merger and acquisition activity. Basical... » read more

Software Platforms Bridge The Design/Verification Gap For 5G Communications Design


The integration of simulation technologies, system prototyping tools, and automated test equipment is critical for addressing the complexity of developing 5G wireless technology. In these cases, design teams will need to rely on a combination of simulation and prototype testing in order to ensure design robustness. Although simulation is essential to design a test bed or prototype, measurement... » read more

Manufacturing Bits: Dec. 13


Phonon lasers A European consortium recently kicked off a new project that will develop a practical phonon laser. The European consortium, called PHENOMEN, will be coordinated by the Catalan Institute of Nanoscience and Nanotechnology (ICN2). Most chips perform functions using an electrical charge (electrons) or by light (photons). In comparison, a phonon “is a quantum of energy or a q... » read more

Manufacturing Bits: Oct. 25


GaN-on-GaN power semis Power semiconductors based on gallium nitride (GaN) are heating up in the market. Typically, suppliers are shipping devices using a GaN-on-silicon process. These devices are available with blocking voltages of up to 650 volts. Going beyond 650 volts is problematic, however. GaN-on-silicon processes suffer from lattice mismatches, cost and other issues. At the ... » read more

GaN Power Semi Biz Heats Up


The market for devices based on gallium nitride (GaN) technology is heating up amid the push for faster and more power efficient systems. Today, [getkc id="217" kc_name="GaN"] is widely used in the production of LEDs. In addition, it is gaining steam in the radio-frequency (RF) market. And the GaN-based power semiconductor market finally appears ready to take off, after several false starts ... » read more

What To Do With A GaN PDK


Wolfspeed's Jeremy Fisher provides a hands on demo of how his group achieved a first-pass run of a 40GHz MMIC chip using using a PDK for its 0.14 micron process. [youtube vid=i7dsQG8CTO4] » read more

Will III-V Power Devices Happen?


In a previous blog post, I provided a review of the overall power device market and trends driving changes in device evolution that entail materials innovation. For the industry to make such a shift, the advantages over mature, low-cost silicon technologies must be compelling and something the industry absolutely has to implement. Now I’d like to focus on new materials offering competitive be... » read more

Manufacturing Bits: Aug. 23


Rolling Out Solar Power...Literally An International team of researchers have developed solar cells that can be added onto a roll of flexible plastic in liquid form, bringing the same kind of economies of production to the solar industry as rolls of paper and ink did for newspapers more than a century ago. Using a roll-to-roll processing method, the team was able to achieve a power conversi... » read more

5 Takeaways From Semicon


As usual, the recent Semicon West trade show was a busy, if not an overwhelming, event. The event, which took place in San Francisco in early July, featured presentations on the usual subjects in the semiconductor and IC-equipment sectors. There were sessions on 200mm, next-generation processes, transistors, lithography, MEMS and many others. In no particular order, here are my five ta... » read more

How Will 5G Work?


Sumit Tomar, general manager of the Wireless Infrastructure Products Group at RF chip giant Qorvo, sat down with Semiconductor Engineering to discuss the development of next-generation 5G wireless networks and other topics. In 2014, RF Micro Devices and TriQuint merged to form Qorvo. What follows are excerpts of that conversation. SE: 5G, the follow-on to the current wireless standard known ... » read more

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