Data Transfer Without Energy Loss

A preview of a new technology ahead of SEMI’s 3D & Systems Summit.


SEMI met with Erez Halahmi, vice president at 0eC SA, to discuss a new way to transfer information not only between chips but also between servers to reduce power consumption while boosting performance. The two spoke ahead of his presentation at the 3D & Systems Summit, 28-30 January, 2019, in Dresden, Germany. To register for the event, please click here.

SEMI: What is Zero energy connection’s (0eC) mission and vision and your role within the company?

Halahmi: Prof. Naaman of the Weizmann institute of Science (Israel) and I founded OeC SA and invented the Zero energy connection (0eC) technology. OeC SA offers a completely new and innovative solution for interconnections, which dovetails with the current technological trend of “less is more.” In fact, we constantly search for a reduction in energy consumption in favor of capacity, all while simplifying manufacturing processes. We try to look at things differently. This is why our technology is so out of the box. It is a completely new way to transfer information, not only between chips but also between servers.

SEMI: What projects are you currently working on that you think will make a difference in 2019?

Halahmi: I am working on several diversified exciting projects including the development of a planar field emitter and a rechargeable battery with energy density higher than 1KWh/Kg. Planar field emission is a field emitter made with standard FAB processes that enable a pixelized matrix of emitters at the resolution of photolithography. The rechargeable battery is a novel battery type that delivers unprecedented energy density.

SEMI: Your presentation at the 3D & Systems Summit will focus on a new way to transfer data. Why is this a key topic?

Halahmi: Metals have been used to transfer data since the realization of the first integrated circuit by Jack Kilby in 1958. What happened next? Photonics slowly entered the market supported by huge investments, and the global market grew over the years. However, even with such enormous growth, photonics is not easily integrated with CMOS processes and the market also faces the conversion energy issue on top of the rising costs of process change. Integrating photonics with CMOS requires converting an electrical signal to a photonic signal and back. This costs energy and adds circuitry complexity. What to do? We identified a need to create something out of the box – on one hand using the same CMOS processes without conversion, and on the other hand significantly increasing performance. More details will be released at my presentation at the 3D & Systems Summit in Dresden. I am certain that you will find our invention very intriguing.

SEMI: What do you think will be the main focus in the future?

Halahmi: My belief regarding many aspects of our life is that history repeats itself. Look for example at the comparison Gallium Arsenide (GaAs) versus Silicon (Si). GaAs was never able to defeat the simplicity of Si. The same applies to data transfer. However, for a solution to overtake the metal interconnect, it is not enough to offer many advantages, but the same order of production simplicity should apply. Consequently, big companies will continue to focus on metal solutions for transferring data, though some smaller companies might adopt our technology due to its relative simplicity of production and great benefits.

SEMI: What are your expectations for the summit in Dresden, and why do you recommend other industry leaders to attend the 2019 3D & Systems Summit?

Halahmi: The summit is a great opportunity to learn about new technologies and meet the people behind these innovations. It is a unique chance to meet and question the inventors themselves and learn more about your competitors. See you soon in Dresden!

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