Deeper Inside Intel


Mark Bohr, senior fellow and director of process architecture and integration at Intel, and Zane Ball, vice president in the Technology and Manufacturing Group at Intel and co-general manager of Intel Custom Foundry, sat down with Semiconductor Engineering to discuss the future directions of transistors, process technology, the foundry business and packaging. What follows are excerpts of those ... » read more

Interconnect Challenges Rising


Chipmakers are ramping up their 14nm finFET processes, with 10nm and 7nm slated to ship possibly later this year or next. At 10nm and beyond, IC vendors are determined to scale the two main parts of the [getkc id="185" kc_name="finFET"] structure—the transistor and interconnects. Generally, transistor scaling will remain challenging at advanced nodes. And on top of that, the interconnects ... » read more

One-On-One: Dave Hemker


Dave Hemker, CTO at [getentity id="22820" comment="Lam Research"], sat down with Semiconductor Engineering to look at some of the key issues on the process and manufacturing side, and some of the key developments that will reshape the semiconductor industry in the future. What follows are excerpts of that conversation. SE: One of the big discussion topics these days is [getkc id="208" commen... » read more

3D Construction Ahead


One of the interesting features of Photonics West is that it covers the full spectrum, from academic research to industrial research to new products in the commercial exhibits. This range of interrelated ideas was on show in 3D fabrication. At one extreme, the latest research in scanning multi-spot three-photon patterning showed 3D structures 100μm thick with 50nm features. Researchers als... » read more

5nm Fab Challenges


At a recent event, Intel presented a paper that generated sparks and fueled speculation regarding the future direction of the leading-edge IC industry. The company described a next-generation transistor called the nanowire FET, which is a finFET turned on its side with a gate wrapped around it. Intel’s nanowire FET, sometimes called a gate-all-around FET, is said to meet the device req... » read more

EUV: Cost Killer Or Savior?


Moore’s Law, the economic foundation of the semiconductor industry, states that transistor density doubles in each technology generation, at constant cost. As IMEC’s Arindam Mallik explained, however, the transition to a new technology node is not a single event, but a process. Typically, when the new technology is first introduced, it brings a 20% to 25% wafer cost increase. Process opt... » read more

Patterning Interconnects At 10nm And Below


By Connie Duncan Chip manufacturers today build billions of transistors on a chip, delivering incredible computing power to consumers. What often gets overlooked is how hard it’s getting to create the many miles of ultra-thin copper wiring used to connect each of the transistors. Patterning these electrical pathways is becoming increasingly challenging as they grow denser and finer, and any ... » read more

Fab Issues At 7nm And 5nm


The race toward the 7nm logic node officially kicked off in July, when IBM Research, GlobalFoundries and Samsung jointly rolled out what the companies claim are the industry’s first 7nm test chips with functional transistors. They're not alone, of course. Intel and TSMC also are racing separately to develop 7nm technology. And in the R&D labs, chipmakers also are working on technologies f... » read more

Tech Talk: Wafer Plane Analysis


Leo Pang, executive vice president at D2S, talks about the problems of patterning at 40nm and below and how to deal with them more effectively using existing equipment. [youtube vid=FbRyhw2q3fE] » read more

Litho Challenges Break The Design-Process Wall


The days when chip designers could throw tape “over the wall” to the manufacturing side are long gone. Over the last several technology generations, increasingly restrictive process kits have forced designers to accommodate their circuit structures to the manufacturing process. Lacking a successor to 193nm lithography, the industry has turned to increasingly complex resolution enhancemen... » read more

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