Author's Latest Posts


Engineering Talent Shortage Now Top Risk Factor


Demand is increasing for engineers and related technical fields in the IC industry, but companies are struggling to find enough talent. The problem is even worse in hot new markets such as AI and 5G, where competition is fierce for experienced workers. The talent shortfall starts with college graduates and professionals in the fields of science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM)... » read more

Week In Review: Manufacturing, Test


Chipmakers IC Insights has released the process technology roadmaps for chipmakers and foundries. GlobalFoundries, Intel, Samsung, SMIC, TSMC and UMC are highlighted. GlobalFoundries has announced that the company’s 8SW RF SOI technology has delivered more than a $1 billion of client design win revenue since its launch in 2017. RF SOI is designed for RF switches and other devices in 4G/... » read more

5 Top Storylines For NAND Biz


2019 is expected to be a busy, if not difficult, year in the NAND flash memory market. Vendors will continue to ramp up 3D NAND, the successor to traditional 2D or planar NAND. Then, over the last year, prices for NAND have dropped with oversupply in the market. What’s in store in 2019? Vendors are expected to rush out their next-generation products. Then, there is a debate whether the... » read more

In-Memory Vs. Near-Memory Computing


New memory-centric chip technologies are emerging that promise to solve the bandwidth bottleneck issues in today’s systems. The idea behind these technologies is to bring the memory closer to the processing tasks to speed up the system. This concept isn’t new and the previous versions of the technology fell short. Moreover, it’s unclear if the new approaches will live up to their billi... » read more

Mixed Outlook For Silicon Wafer Biz


After a period of record growth, the silicon wafer industry is off to a slow start in 2019 and facing a mixed outlook. Generally, 200mm silicon wafer supply remains tight. But demand for 300mm silicon wafers is cooling off in some segments, causing supply to move toward equilibrium after a period of shortages. On average, though, silicon wafer prices continue to rise despite the slowdown. ... » read more

Manufacturing Bits: Feb. 19


Computed Axial Lithography Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) and the University of California at Berkeley have developed a 3D printing method to produce a new class of polymer parts. The technology, called Computed Axial Lithography (CAL), projects photons on a resin in a vial within a 3D printer. In total, researchers have demonstrated the ability to shine 1,440 different proje... » read more

Week In Review: Manufacturing, Test


Chipmakers and OEMs South Korean chipmaker MagnaChip reported its results. It has also undertaken a strategic evaluation of the company's foundry business and Fab 4, the larger of the company's two 200mm fabs. “The strategic evaluation is expected to include a range of possible options, including, but not limited to, joint ventures, strategic partnerships as well as M&A possibilities. The co... » read more

Lithography Challenges For Fan-out


Higher density fan-out packages are moving toward more complex structures with finer routing layers, all of which requires more capable lithography equipment and other tools. The latest high-density fan-out packages are migrating toward the 1µm line/space barrier and beyond, which is considered a milestone in the industry. At these critical dimensions (CDs), fan-outs will provide better per... » read more

Manufacturing Bits: Feb. 11


How things stick together Using a metrology technique called atomic force microscopy (AFM), Brown University has gained more insights into the theory of adhesion or how things stick together. Understanding the theory of adhesion also has some practical applications. It could pave the way towards a new class of MEMS or nanoscale devices. Nanoscale patterning is another potential application.... » read more

Week In Review: Manufacturing, Test


Chipmakers and OEMs Diamond semiconductor IP vendor AKHAN Semiconductor is cooperating with a U.S. federal investigation into alleged theft of its intellectual property by China’s Huawei. When AKHAN agreed to send its proprietary technology to Huawei pursuant to an agreement, AKHAN “believes that Huawei destroyed our product, shipped it to China without authorization, subjected it to tests... » read more

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