Etching Technology Advances


Let’s get really, really small. That directive from leading semiconductor companies and their customers is forcing the whole semiconductor supply chain to come up with new ways to design and manufacture ever-shrinking dimensions for chips. The current push is to 10nm and 7nm, but R&D into 5nm and 3nm is already underway. To put this in perspective, there are roughly two silicon atom... » read more

Fab Tool Biz Faces Challenges In 2017


After experiencing a gradual recovery and positive growth in 2016, the semiconductor equipment industry sees a mixed picture as well as some uncertainty in 2017. In the near term, though, business is robust. Several chipmakers started to place a sizeable number of fab tool orders in the latter part of 2016, particularly in three areas—3D NAND, logic and foundry. Now, after buying the in... » read more

5 Takeaways From BACUS


As usual, the recent SPIE Photomask Technology Conference, sometimes called BACUS, was a busy event. The event, which took place in San Jose, Calif., featured presentations on the usual subjects in the photomask sector. There were presentations on mask writers, inspection, metrology, repair and cleaning. And, of course, the papers included masks based on extreme ultraviolet (EUV) lithograp... » read more

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

How Healthy Is The Chip Market?


By Ed Sperling & Ann Steffora Mutschler The inclusion of semiconductors in more products across more market segments—many of which historically have not been large consumers of chips—is having a big impact on how they are designed and manufactured, as well as how they are tracked and quantified. In the past, semiconductor sales were so closely tied to the success of personal computers... » read more

The Week In Review: Manufacturing


Samsung introduced inFlux, a new lineup of high-flux, linear LED modules optimized for industrial lighting applications such as plants, parking lots and warehouses. The LED modules serve as a replacement for conventional T8 and T5HO tubes and are suitable for high-flux LED luminaires covering up to 40,000lm. The semiconductor market is off to a slow start in 2016. And it might be a long yea... » read more

The Urge To Merge


The electronics supply chain will remember 2015 as a year of unprecedented consolidation due to relentless acquisition activity, mega mergers and a rampant restructuring of the industry. Almost every other week brought a momentous announcement. Seemingly, before one could appreciate the current status, the industry reverberated with yet another new deal. To better understand the scope of M&A... » read more

Semiconductor R&D Crisis?


Research and development is a sometimes forgotten but critical element in the semiconductor industry. The delicate R&D ecosystem enables many of the key breakthroughs in the business. But there could be a troubling trend, if not a crisis, brewing on two fronts in the R&D arena. On one front, R&D costs for semiconductor technologies are escalating at each node. Higher R&D costs are not only ... » read more

Semiconductors By The Numbers


Five economists presented their observations and predictions on a broad range of issues, from cycles to wafer fab materials to geopolitics and how they will affect semiconductor manufacturing at this month's SEMI's Industry Strategy Symposium. Comparing their different viewpoints would be to take them out of context, because their starting points are so different. To avoid confusion, Semicon... » read more

The Semiconductor Future Looks Bright!


At the beginning of the SEMI Market Forum held on Dec. 4, during the 38th SEMCON Japan, session moderator and SEMI Global Vice President Jonathan Davis said, “There are significant changes in the semiconductor industry and it is not the industry it was 38 years ago, 10 years ago, even 5 years ago. There have been dramatic changes in technology complexity in addition to incredible industry adv... » read more

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