China’s Capital Equipment Market To Boom

The worldwide semiconductor capital equipment market declined 3% last year to $36.53 billion from 2014’s $37.5 billion, but inside China the story was significantly different. Capital equipment sales there increased by 12% in 2015, to $4.9 billion. In fact, only Japan showed a higher growth rate last year, of 31%, according to figures from [getentity id="22821" comment="SEMI"] and the Semi... » read more

Manufacturing Bits: Aug. 2

CMP replacement? For years, chipmakers have used chemical-mechanical-polishing (CMP) tools to smooth or polish the surface of a wafer. CMP works, but the technology is time-consuming and expensive. CMP can also leave unwanted residual patterns and defects near the surface. In response, Russia’s National Research Nuclear University MEPhI (Moscow Engineering Physics Institute) has help... » read more

The Week In Review: Manufacturing

Fab tools Applied Materials has officially rolled out the Producer Selectra system, a selective etch tool. The system falls under the loosely defined category called atomic layer etch (ALE). Applied’s technology addresses a number of challenges. Today’s advanced chips have complex structures. They may also have deep and narrow trenches. One of the challenges is the inability of wet ... » read more

Fab Investment Increases In China

By Mark LaPedus & Ed Sperling Fab construction in China is heating up, driven by real and projected demand for IoT devices and the government's push for internally manufactured chips. [getentity id="22819" comment="GlobalFoundries"], UMC and [getentity id="22586" comment="TSMC"] are all actively building up fab capacity inside of China, usually in conjunction with other local governme... » read more

Foundries Expand Their Scope

By Ed Sperling & Mark LaPedus Major foundries are stepping up their offerings across a wide swath of technology nodes, specialty processes and advanced packaging—a recognition that end markets are fragmenting and that the path forward includes a mix of new and established processes. As the smart phone market flattens, there is no single "next big thing" to drive volume at the most ... » read more

Inside The OSAT Business

Semiconductor Engineering sat down to discuss the IC-packaging industry, foundries, China and other topics with Tien Wu, chief operating officer at Taiwan's Advanced Semiconductor Engineering (ASE), the world's largest outsourced semiconductor assembly and test (OSAT) vendor. What follows are excerpts of that conversation. SE: What is your overall outlook for 2016? Wu: Last year, the semi... » read more

Consolidation Hits OSAT Biz

The outsourced semiconductor assembly and test (OSAT) industry is undergoing a new wave of acquisition activity that will dramatically reshape the packaging and test services markets. [getkc id="83" kc_name="OSATs"] have seen a considerable amount of consolidation over the years, but the industry needs a scorecard to keep track of the recent deals and the resulting fallout. One OSAT deal inv... » read more

Inside Advanced Packaging

Semiconductor Engineering sat down to discuss advanced IC-packaging, the OSAT industry, China and other topics with Ron Huemoeller, vice president of worldwide R&D at Amkor. What follows are excerpts of that conversation. SE: Where are we in advanced IC-packaging today? Huemoeller: We’ve hit the inflection point. Now we are coming to the other side of it. Regarding this need to int... » read more

Fan-Out Packaging Gains Steam

Fan-outs are creating a buzz and gaining steam in the market at a pace far beyond what anyone would have expected even at the start of the year. The approach, which has been around for several years, is a wafer-level packaging process that enables ultra-thin, high-density packages. So why the buzz? Apple is apparently moving to [getkc id="202" kc_name="fan-out"] packaging, according to an... » read more

Packaging Wars Ahead

There has been much talk about semiconductor industry consolidation, but the shift into advanced packaging could have more far-reaching effects than all the mega-deals so far. Packaging is big business. Yole Développement has pinned the market at $30 billion, but that's only a thin slice of the pie that's in play. Companies that win the packaging deals also have a good shot of winning the m... » read more

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