Manufacturing Bits: Jan. 28


Fast photography The California Institute of Technology has developed a high-speed camera that can take pictures of transparent objects. The technology, called phase-sensitive compressed ultrafast photography (pCUP), can take up to 1 trillion pictures per second of transparent objects. Potentially, the technology from Caltech could be used in several applications, such as taking photos of s... » read more

Going On the Edge


Emmanuel Sabonnadière, chief executive of Leti, sat down with Semiconductor Engineering to talk about artificial intelligence (AI), edge computing and chip technologies. What follows are excerpts of that conversation. SE: Where is AI going in the future? Sabonnadière: I am a strong believer that edge AI will change our lives. Today’s microelectronics are organized with 80% of things i... » read more

Week In Review: Manufacturing, Test


Market research What are the hot chip markets for 2020? IC Insights released its rankings of sales growth rates for each of the 33 IC product categories defined by the World Semiconductor Trade Statistics (WSTS) organization. “After posting the two worst growth rates among all IC product categories in 2019, NAND flash and DRAM are forecast to be among the top three fastest-growing IC segment... » read more

Is This The Year Of The Chiplet?


Customizing chips by choosing pre-characterized — and most likely hardened IP — from a menu of options appears to be gaining ground. It's rare to go to a conference these days without hearing chiplets being mentioned. At a time when end markets are splintering and more designs are unique, chiplets are viewed as a way to rapidly build a device using exactly what is required for a particul... » read more

SiC Foundry Business Emerges


Several third-party foundry vendors are entering or expanding their efforts in the silicon carbide (SiC) business amid booming demand for the technology. However, making a significant dent in the market will not be so easy for SiC foundry vendors and their customers. They are facing stiff competition from traditional SiC device vendors such as Cree, Infineon, Rohm and STMicroelectronics. ... » read more

AI And Big Data Set To Reinvent Semiconductor Industry


The recent IEEE International Electron Devices Meeting (IEDM) reaffirmed that the semiconductor industry is in a period of reinvention as we grapple with the challenges and opportunities promised by the Internet of Things (IoT), Big Data and AI. That such change is underway was made evident by a panel I was honored to moderate titled, “The Future of Logic: EUV is Here, Now What?” Joining... » read more

Finding Defects In EUV Masks


Extreme ultraviolet (EUV) lithography is finally in production at advanced nodes, but there are still several challenges with the technology, such as EUV mask defects. Defects are unwanted deviations in chips, which can impact yield and performance. They can crop up during the chip manufacturing process, including the production of a mask or photomask, sometimes called a reticle. Fortunately... » read more

Semiconductor Equipment Growth Resumes For 2020


The December Global Purchasing Managers Index was in zero growth territory (PMI = 50). However, the various country components varied significantly. With IHS Markit PMI data as a gauge of manufacturing activity, following are how some key electronics-producing countries and regions finished 2019. World Manufacturing Growth Flat to Start 2020 (Chart 1) To quote IHS Markit’s chief eco... » read more

5/3nm Wars Begin


Several foundries are ramping up their new 5nm processes in the market, but now customers must decide whether to design their next chips around the current transistor type or move to a different one at 3nm and beyond. The decision involves the move to extend today’s finFETs to 3nm, or to implement a new technology called gate-all-around FETs (GAA FETs) at 3nm or 2nm. An evolutionary step f... » read more

GaN on SiC: The Only Viable Long-Term Solution for 5G


The 5G wave that’s been building for many years will finally come to shore in 2019. Early (but extremely limited) service rollouts will gain much fanfare and the first round of 5G-enabled devices will begin to hit markets. Wider commercial deployments, however, are still off in the distance and will be a slow but growing wave from 2020 to 2025. CCS Insight predicts 1 billion 5G users globally... » read more

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