Next-Generation Vehicles Pose Automotive Semiconductor Test Challenges


Various market trends are driving requirements for automotive semiconductor test as technology increasingly defines the future of the automobile. According to IHS Markit, the total market for semiconductors, having reached nearly $500 billion in 2018, will grow at a CAGR of 4.88% through 2022, while the automotive electronics category, reaching more than $40 billion in 2018, will outpace the to... » read more

3D Metal Printing: Does It Add Up?


Prolific Renaissance artist Michelangelo said, “The sculpture is already complete within the marble block before I start my work. ... I just have to chisel away the superfluous material.” I wonder what the great visionary would think of exchanging his chisel for an additive-manufacturing tool such as today’s 3D printers. 3D printing has been around since the 1980s, when it was first kn... » read more

Challenges In Making And Testing STT-MRAM


Several chipmakers are ramping up a next-generation memory type called STT-MRAM, but there are still an assortment of manufacturing and test challenges for current and future devices. STT-MRAM, or spin-transfer torque MRAM, is attractive and gaining steam because it combines the attributes of several conventional memory types in a single device. In the works for years, STT-MRAM features the ... » read more

5G Heats Up Base Stations


Before 5G can be deployed commercially on a large scale, engineers have to solve some stubborn problems—including how to make a hot technology a whole lot cooler. 5G-capable modem chipsets are already on the market from Qualcomm, Samsung, Huawei, MediaTek, Intel and Apple, with some 5G service (LTE-Advanced/LTE-Advanced Pro) available in the U.S. But still mostly missing from the 5G equati... » read more

Gaps Emerge In Automotive Test


Demands by automakers for zero defects over 18 years are colliding with real-world limitations of testing complex circuitry and interactions, and they are exposing a fundamental disconnect between mechanical and electronic expectations that could be very expensive to fix. This is especially apparent at leading-edge nodes, where much of the logic is being developed for AI systems and image se... » read more

Making AI More Dependable


Ira Leventhal, vice president of Advantest’s new concept product initiative, looks at why AI has taken so long to get going, what role it will play in improving the reliability of all chips, and how to use AI to improve the reliability of AI chips themselves. » read more

Week In Review: Manufacturing, Test


Fab tools and test Lam Research has developed a new self-maintaining or self-cleaning chamber for its etch tools. With the technology, Lam announced a new industry benchmark has been set for productivity in etch processing using its self-maintaining equipment. Etch process modules are typically cleaned weekly or monthly. Recently, Lam and a chipmaker reached the milestone of going 365 days... » read more

Lithography Options For Next-Gen Devices


Chipmakers are ramping up extreme ultraviolet (EUV) lithography for advanced logic at 7nm and/or 5nm, but EUV isn’t the only lithographic option on the table. For some time, the industry has been working on an assortment of other next-generation lithography technologies, including a new version of EUV. Each technology is different and aimed at different applications. Some are here today, w... » read more

Week In Review: Manufacturing, Test


Fab tools ASML said it has disagreed with any implication that it has been a victim of “Chinese espionage,” as stated in an article in a Dutch newspaper. The article discusses the results of a public court case in the United States that ASML won last year. In the case, XTAL was found by a jury to have misappropriated ASML’s confidential and proprietary information as well as trade secret... » read more

Racing To The Edge


The race is on to win a piece of the edge, despite the fact that there is no consistent definition of where the edge begins and ends or how the various pieces will be integrated or ultimately tested. The edge concept originated with the Internet of Things, where the initial idea was that tens of billions of dumb sensors would communicate through gateways to the cloud. That idea persisted unt... » read more

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