Upturn Seen For Silicon Wafer Market


After a downturn in 2019, the silicon wafer market is expected to rebound in 2020. 2021 looks even better for silicon wafers. Silicon wafers are a fundamental part of the semiconductor business. Every chipmaker needs to buy them in one size or another. Silicon wafer vendors produce and sell bare or raw silicon wafers to chipmakers, who in turn process them into chips. The silicon wafer ma... » read more

Mask/Lithography Issues For Mature Nodes


Semiconductor Engineering sat down to discuss lithography and photomask issues with Bryan Kasprowicz, director of technology and strategy and a distinguished member of the technical staff at Photronics; Harry Levinson, principal at HJL Lithography; Noriaki Nakayamada, senior technologist at NuFlare; and Aki Fujimura, chief executive of D2S. What follows are excerpts of that conversation. ... » read more

Moov: Used Equipment Digital Marketplace


Most startups in the tech world are done by engineers or scientists. The idea behind Moov, a platform for buying and selling used equipment, is the brainchild of investment bankers. In effect, Moov has built a futures platform for semiconductor manufacturing equipment, with prices updated every few minutes from all over the world. "The basic idea is that every few years, companies upgrade... » read more

China Speeds Up Advanced Chip Development


China is accelerating its efforts to advance its domestic semiconductor industry, amid ongoing trade tensions with the West, in hopes of becoming more self-sufficient. The country is still behind in IC technology and is nowhere close to being self-reliant, but it is making noticeable progress. Until recently, China’s domestic chipmakers were stuck with mature foundry processes with no pres... » read more

Demand Picks Up For 200mm


Demand is growing for both 200mm fab capacity and equipment, setting the stage for possible shortages in coming months. But there are also some uncertainties, if not warning signs, in the 200mm market and the entire IC industry. Trade disputes, as well as the current coronavirus outbreak in China, likely will impact the chip and equipment markets. The size of the impact and the duration rema... » read more

Using New Technologies On Smaller Wafers


The industry is no longer held captive by sales from computing applications, such as personal computers, servers or even cellular phones and tablets. A diverse range of markets are contributing to growth seen by Lam and our customers. Cloud storage, machine learning or artificial intelligence (AI), virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR), robotics, medical and automotive, including the ... » read more

Blog Review: Dec. 18


Lam Research's David Haynes finds that taking advances made at 300mm and applying them via upgrades to 200mm equipment is a cost appropriate strategy to quickly improve yield and add capacity. Synopsys' Taylor Armerding looks at which of this year's many data breaches hit corporate wallets the hardest and how the cost of privacy noncompliance is expected to rise with California's CCPA and st... » read more

Manufacturing Bits: Oct. 15


Sandia’s fab upgrade Sandia National Laboratories has completed the first phase of a three-year upgrade program in its semiconductor wafer fab. The goal of the program is to convert Sandia’s Albuquerque, N.M.-based fab from 150mm (6-inch) to 200mm (8-inch) wafer sizes. As part of the move, Sandia is converting its 0.35-micron (350nm) rad-hard process from 150mm to 200mm. The process is ... » read more

200mm Cools Off, But Not For Long


After years of acute shortages, 200mm fab capacity is finally loosening up, but the supply/demand picture could soon change with several challenges on the horizon. 200mm fabs are older facilities with more mature processes, although they still churn out a multitude of today’s critical chips, such as analog, MEMS, RF and others. From 2016 to 2018, booming demand for these and other chips ca... » read more

CEO Outlook: It Gets Much Harder From Here


Semiconductor Engineering sat down to discuss what's changing across the semiconductor industry with Wally Rhines, CEO emeritus at Mentor, a Siemens Business; Jack Harding, president and CEO of eSilicon; John Kibarian, president and CEO of PDF Solutions; and John Chong, vice president of product and business development for Kionix. What follows are excerpts of that discussion, which was held in... » read more

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