Taking A Pulse On The IC Biz


It’s been a difficult period for the semiconductor industry. The coronavirus outbreak has put a damper on what was supposed to be a strong year in the semiconductor industry in 2020. Many are holding out hopes for a rebound in the second half of the year. That’s still a big unknown. The forecasts are gloomy. For example, VLSI Research has three different scenarios for the semiconduc... » read more

Gradual Rebound Or Slight Dip


Uncertainty has gripped the silicon wafer market as the COVID-19 pandemic threatens to upend growth projections for 2020. Declines in both shipments and revenue plagued the silicon wafer market in 2019, a downturn that had given way to optimism for 2020 with rising expectations for normalizing inventory levels, memory market improvements, data center market growth and the 5G market takeoff. ... » read more

Artificial Intelligence Is Everywhere


It’s pretty hard to talk about technology today without artificial intelligence, or AI, entering into the conversation. It seems to be everywhere… and growing. Businesses are using it to operate more efficiently, it’s resulting in safer and more useful products, and it has the promise of allowing us to personalize our worlds as devices learn our preferences. The age of AI AI refers to t... » read more

The Impact Of EUV Resist Thickness On Via Patterning Uniformity


Via patterning at advanced nodes requires extremely low critical dimension (CD) values, typically below 30nm. Controlling these dimensions is a serious challenge, since there are many inherent sources of variation during lithography and etch processing. Coventor personnel, in conjunction with our colleagues from ASML and imec, recently looked at the impact of Extreme Ultraviolet lithography (EU... » read more

Is It Time To Decentralize The Supply Chain?


One of the key requirements in any engineered system is a backup plan. A single point of failure in safety-critical or mission-critical applications can lead to disaster, whether that involves a smart phone, a car, a bridge, an airplane, or a design, manufacturing or business process. So why has this been largely ignored across the semiconductor manufacturing supply chain? The answer is comp... » read more

Auto Outlook: Down But Not Out


For years, automotive has been an engine of growth in the semiconductor industry, although the market is expected to decline in 2020. Several types of chips are used in automobiles, such as analog, memory, microcontrollers, processors and RF. But the automotive IC business still represents a small percentage of the overall semiconductor market. It pales in comparison to the smartphone chip m... » read more

Fab Equipment Poised For A Record 2021


Global fab equipment spending promises to crawl out of a gloomy 2019 and see a modest recovery this year before a sharp uptick drives record investments in 2021 in a vivid display of the decades-old cyclicality playing out in the semiconductor industry. Typically – and reliably – fab investments fall into negative territory after two years of growth, though a few periods have bucked that... » read more

Big Problems In A Little Data World


Lam Executive Vice President and Chief Technology Officer, Richard A. Gottscho, gave a keynote at the SEMI Industry Strategy Symposium (ISS), the annual executive conference for the semiconductor industry. Titled “I’m Living in a Little Data World, but I Have a Big Problem,” Rick talked about the challenges faced by the “little data world” of process development and the potential for ... » read more

How Silicon Carbide Is Improving Energy Efficiency & Lowering Costs In Industrial Applications


Industrial applications such as server power supplies, uninterruptible power supplies (UPS), and motor drives consume a significant portion of the world’s power. Thus, any increase in the efficiency of any end user power system will substantially reduce a company’s operating costs. Combined with greater power density and better thermal performance, the demand for high-efficiency power suppl... » read more

The Next Technology Frontier In MEMS Gyroscopes


In MEMS technology development, it is always exciting to see the next technology frontier, the border of the known and the unknown. Talent and hard work (along with ingenuity) can move this frontier and enrich all of us. We respect the efforts of MEMS innovators, who have developed original and creative ideas by building upon past knowledge and wisdom and have integrated this knowledge across m... » read more

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