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Cobalt Shortages Ahead


Rapid growth of electric vehicles is creating an enormous demand for cobalt, causing tight supply, high prices and supply chain issues for this critical material. Cobalt is a ferromagnetic metal and one of the key materials used in lithium-ion batteries for cell phones, notebook PCs, battery-electric cars and hybrids. It also is used in alloys and semiconductors. And while the IC industry co... » read more

3D NAND Flash Wars Begin


3D NAND suppliers are gearing up for a new battle amid a period of price and competitive pressures, racing each other to the next technology generations. Competition is intensifying as a new player enters the 3D NAND market—China’s Yangtze Memory Technologies Co. (YMTC). Backed by billions of dollars in funding from the Chinese government, YMTC recently introduced its first 3D NAND techn... » read more

Week In Review: Manufacturing, Test


Trade wars It’s difficult to keep up with the U.S.-China trade war. In the latest event, the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR) recently released a 25% tariff on $16 billion in imports from China. This includes 29 tariff lines that represent the heart of the semiconductor industry, according to SEMI. “SEMI, along with hundreds of companies, including Lam Research and KLA-Tencor, submitted wr... » read more

Next-Gen Memory Ramping Up


The next-generation memory market is heating up as vendors ramp a number of new technologies, but there are some challenges in bringing these products into the mainstream. For years, the industry has been working on a variety of memory technologies, including carbon nanotube RAM, FRAM, MRAM, phase-change memory and ReRAM. Some are shipping, while others are in R&D. Each memory type is di... » read more

Adapt Or Fall Behind: Surviving And Thriving In The Competitive Jungle Of Plant Operations Scheduling And IIoT


Biopharmaceutical manufacturing has required significant technological developments in the area of cell culture, chromatography, and purification. It is no small miracle that every day across the world, millions of liters of cell culture capacity generates life-saving medicines for the patients who need it. The bio-manufacturing process is unique in its need for— Tight regulation of an i... » read more

The Materials Side Of AI


As we enter the foundry 7nm and below technology nodes, tungsten fill for contacts has reached the physical limits of scaling and copper used in the lowest level interconnects is facing challenges on multiple fronts. Solving these issues will require a new conducting material, namely cobalt. This transition can enable continued device scaling and less power consumption per computation. Follo... » read more

Blog Review: Aug. 8


Cadence's Meera Collier provides a primer on the basics of quantum computing, including how quantum gates work using superpositions and how it could impact chip design. Mentor's Dennis Brophy shares a list of resources to help you get up to speed on the recently-approved Portable Test and Stimulus standard, which enables test scenarios to be run across different execution platforms. Synop... » read more

The Chiplet Race Begins


Momentum is building for the development of advanced packages and systems using so-called chiplets, but the technology faces some challenges in the market. A group led by DARPA, as well as Marvell, zGlue and others are pursuing chiplet technology, which is a different way of integrating multiple dies in a package or system. In fact, the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA), part... » read more

Week In Review: Manufacturing, Test


Trade issues China and the United States are embroiled in a trade war. What is the impact? In testimony submitted to the Office of the United States Trade Representative (USTR) on the proposed tariffs on Chinese products, Consumer Technology Association (CTA) Vice President of International Trade Sage Chandler argues tariffs negatively impact businesses and consumers as well as fail to corr... » read more

Mixed Outlook For Semi Biz


Both the IC and fab equipment industries have been enjoying a boom cycle for some time, but they could be facing speed bumps and possibly turbulence in the second half of this year and into 2019. In the first half of 2018, the industry was fueled by the momentum carried over from 2017. DRAM prices remained relatively high, which contributed to the revenue growth in the overall IC industry. M... » read more

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