The Week In Review: Manufacturing


R&D Amid budget cuts in the U.S. government, federal funding for R&D at higher education institutions in the United States declined for a fourth straight year, according to a new report from the National Center for Science and Engineering Statistics (NCSES). Overall, universities reported $68.8 billion in R&D expenditures in 2015, a 2.2% increase from 2014, according to the NCSES, part of t... » read more

Manufacturing Bits: Nov. 1


U.S. to boost IC competitiveness President Obama’s Council of Advisors on Science & Technology (PCAST) has launched a new semiconductor working group in the United States. The new working group will focus on ways to strengthen the competitiveness of the U.S. semiconductor industry. It will provide recommendations to PCAST regarding the challenges facing the U.S. semiconductor industry. Th... » read more

The Week In Review: Manufacturing


Chipmakers Alain Kaloyeros, president of SUNY Polytechnic Institute, has resigned. This comes amid charges that Kaloyeros was involved in an alleged bid-rigging scheme, according to multiple reports. SUNY Poly, a high-tech educational ecosystem in New York, was recently formed from the merger of the SUNY College of Nanoscale Science and Engineering (CNSE) and the SUNY Institute of Technology. ... » read more

ASML To Buy Hermes


Looking to expand into new markets, ASML Holding has entered into an agreement to acquire e-beam wafer inspection specialist Hermes Microvision (HMI) in a cash transaction valued at 2.75 billion euros (US$3.08 billion). With the proposed acquisition of Taiwan’s HMI, ASML will enter two new markets—-wafer inspection as well as mask inspection for extreme ultraviolet (EUV) lithography. In ... » read more

Inside Inspection And Metrology


Semiconductor Engineering sat down to talk about inspection, metrology and other issues with Mehdi Vaez-Iravani, vice president of advanced imaging technologies at Applied Materials. What follows are excerpts of that conversation. SE: Today, the industry is working on a new range of complex architectures, such as 3D NAND and finFETs. For these technologies, the industry is clearly struggling... » read more

The Next Resists…Continued


As previously discussed, conventional chemically-amplified resists are struggling to balance the competing requirements of EUV lithography. Simultaneously meeting the industry’s targets for resolution, sensitivity, and line-edge roughness may require new resist concepts. Inpria’s resist technology, based on tin-oxide nano clusters, is one possibility. Recently published work at SUNY Albany ... » read more

Inside The SRC


Semiconductor Engineering sat down to talk with Ken Hansen, the new president and chief executive of the Semiconductor Research Corp. (SRC), a U.S.-based technology research consortium. Prior to joining the SRC in May, Hansen was vice president and chief technology officer at Freescale. What follows are excerpts of that conversation. SE: My impression is that the SRC allocates funding for va... » read more

Finding Defects Is Getting Harder


Chipmakers are plotting out a strategy to scale the transistor to 10nm and beyond. Migrating to these nodes presents a number of challenges, but one issue is starting to gain more attention in the market—killer defects. Defects have always been problematic in the yield ramp for chip designs, but the ability to find them is becoming more difficult and expensive at each node. And it will be... » 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

Speeding Up E-beam Inspection


Wafer inspection, the science of finding killer defects in chips, is reaching a critical juncture. Optical inspection, the workhorse technology in the fab, is being stretched to the limit at advanced nodes. And e-beam inspection can find tiny defects, but it remains slow in terms of throughput. So to fill the gap, the industry has been working on a new class of multiple beam e-beam inspectio... » read more

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