Dealing With Resistance In Chips


Chipmakers continue to scale the transistor at advanced nodes, but they are struggling to maintain the same pace with the other two critical parts of the device—the contacts and interconnects. That’s beginning to change, however. In fact, at 10nm/7nm, chipmakers are introducing new topologies and materials such as cobalt, which promises to boost the performance and reduce unwanted resist... » read more

Big Trouble At 3nm


As chipmakers begin to ramp up 10nm/7nm technologies in the market, vendors are also gearing up for the development of a next-generation transistor type at 3nm. Some have announced specific plans at 3nm, but the transition to this node is expected to be a long and bumpy one, filled with a slew of technical and cost challenges. For example, the design cost for a 3nm chip could exceed an eye-p... » read more

The Week In Review: Manufacturing


Chipmakers and OEMs Tesla Motors has been struggling to get its new electric car, the Model 3, out the door. And it recently implemented a layoff amid ongoing losses. But the struggling car maker could be in the midst of a rebound. “Based on our checks, we believe the perceived quality of Model 3s coming off the lines continue to improve relative to prior checks, and we view this as one of t... » read more

The Week In Review: Manufacturing


Cleanliness is a good thing. In the fab, it's also a very profitable thing. According to a report from Research and Markets, the wafer cleaning systems market will grow more than 6%. The research house notes, however, that the rate of growth is slowing. GlobalFoundries began volume production of its 180nm ultra-high-voltage process for industrial and power applications. The base platform sta... » read more

200mm Fab Crunch


Growing demand for analog, MEMS and RF chips continues to cause acute shortages for both 200mm fab capacity and equipment, and it shows no sign of letting up. Today, 200mm fab capacity is tight with a similar situation projected for the second half of 2018 and perhaps well into 2019. In fact, 2018 will likely represent the third consecutive year that 200mm fab capacity will be tight. The sam... » read more

FinFET Metrology Challenges Grow


Chipmakers face a multitude of challenges in the fab at 10nm/7nm and beyond, but one technology that is typically under the radar is becoming especially difficult—metrology. Metrology, the art of measuring and characterizing structures, is used to pinpoint problems in devices and processes. It helps to ensure yields in both the lab and fab. At 28nm and above, metrology is a straightforward... » read more

The Week In Review: Manufacturing


Chipmakers As reported, Intel is struggling at 10nm. Intel already has encountered some difficulties, as the chip giant late last year pushed out the volume ramp of its new 10nm process from the second half of 2017 to the first part of 2018, according to analysts. Intel continues to struggle with 10nm, and has delayed the volume ramp again, according to multiple reports. During its earnings... » read more

The Week In Review: Manufacturing


Trade The trade tensions are building between the U.S. and China. In the latest move, the U.S. Department of Commerce has imposed a ban on U.S. companies selling chips to ZTE, a Chinese telecom equipment and mobile phone vendor. The ban has been implemented on ZTE for seven years after the firm “was caught illegally shipping U.S. goods to Iran,” according to a report from Reuters. This... » read more

New Patterning Options Emerging


Several fab tool vendors are rolling out the next wave of self-aligned patterning technologies amid the shift toward new devices at 10/7nm and beyond. Applied Materials, Lam Research and TEL are developing self-aligned technologies based on a variety of new approaches. The latest approach involves self-aligned patterning techniques with multi-color material schemes, which are designed for us... » read more

Searching For EUV Defects


Chipmakers hope to insert extreme ultraviolet (EUV) lithography at 7nm and/or 5nm, but several challenges need to be solved before this oft-delayed technology can be used in production. One lingering issue that is becoming more worrisome is how to find defects caused by [gettech id="31045" comment="EUV"] processes. These processes can cause random variations, also known as stochastic effects... » read more

← Older posts