Re-Engineering The FinFET

The semiconductor industry is still in the early stages of the [getkc id="185" kc_name="finFET"] era, but the [getkc id="26" kc_name="transistor"] technology already is undergoing a dramatic change. The fins themselves are getting a makeover. In the first-generation finFETs, the fins were relatively short and tapered. In the next wave, the fins are expected to get taller, thinner and more re... » read more

Ion Implanter Market Heats Up

The ion implanter market has been a stable, if not a sleepy, business. The last big event took place in 2011, when Applied Materials re-entered the ion implanter market by acquiring Varian, the world’s leading supplier of these tools. The acquisition gave Applied Materials a commanding 80% share of the implanter business, with the other players fighting for the crumbs. But after year... » read more

A Guide To Advanced Process Design Kits

The increasing complexity of design enablement has prompted manufacturers to optimize the design process. New tools and techniques, thanks to next-generation hardware and software, have provided a new platform for semiconductor and wafer design. Advanced PDKs are the solution and have been developed by foundries to optimize the design process and leverage and reuse intellectual property (IP) an... » read more

Overcoming Shallow Trench Isolation

By Kathryn Ta To prevent electrical current leaking between adjacent transistors, state-of-the-art microchips feature shallow trench isolation (STI) to isolate transistors from each other. Key steps in the STI process involve etching a pattern of trenches in the silicon, depositing dielectric materials to fill the trenches, and removing the excess dielectric using technologies such as chemical... » read more

Fabless-Foundry Model Under Stress

By Mark LaPedus The semiconductor roadmap was once a smooth and straightforward path, but chipmakers face a bumpy and challenging ride as they migrate to the 20nm node and beyond. Among the challenges seen on the horizon are the advent of 3D stacking, 450mm fabs, new transistor architectures, multi-patterning, and the questionable availability of extreme ultraviolet (EUV) lithography. ... » read more