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Week In Review: Manufacturing, Test


President Biden signed an executive order on Sept. 15, limiting foreign investments in U.S. technology by "competitor or adversarial nations" that are deemed a threat to national security. In the past, the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS) largely limited its actions to the sale of U.S. companies. The new directive expands that to include investments involving "U.S. s... » read more

Technical Paper Roundup: Sept 6


New technical papers added to Semiconductor Engineering’s library this week. [table id=49 /] Semiconductor Engineering is in the process of building this library of research papers. Please send suggestions (via comments section below) for what else you’d like us to incorporate. If you have research papers you are trying to promote, we will review them to see if they are a good fit f... » read more

Particle Removal From EUV Photomasks


This technical paper titled "AFM-Based Hamaker Constant Determination with Blind Tip Reconstruction" was just published by researchers at ASML, RWTH Aachen University, and AMO GmbH. The research reports a vaccuum AFM-based approach for particle removal from EUV photomasks. Find the technical paper here. Published August 2022. Ku, B., van de Wetering, F., Bolten, J., Stel, B., van de K... » read more

How Overlay Keeps Pace With EUV Patterning


Overlay metrology tools improve accuracy while delivering acceptable throughput, addressing competing requirements in increasingly complex devices. In a race that never ends, on-product overlay tolerances for leading-edge devices are shrinking rapidly. They are in the single-digit nanometer range for the 3nm generation (22nm metal pitch) devices. New overlay targets, machine learning, and im... » read more

Week In Review: Manufacturing, Test


The U.S. Congress approved the CHIPS Act, a mammoth bipartisan achievement the New York Times called “the most significant government intervention in industrial policy in decades.” As passed, the full package — now called the Chips and Science Act — contains $52 billion in direct assistance for the semiconductor industry, along with $24 billion in tax incentives. In addition, the bill c... » read more

E-beam’s Role Grows For Detecting IC Defects


The perpetual march toward smaller features, coupled with growing demand for better reliability over longer chip lifetimes, has elevated inspection from a relatively obscure but necessary technology into one of the most critical tools in fab and packaging houses. For years, inspection had been framed as a battle between e-beam and optical microscopy. Increasingly, though, other types of insp... » read more

Week In Review, Manufacturing, Test


The U.S. is attempting to restrict sales of ASML’s deep ultra-violet (DUV) litho systems to China, according to a report from Bloomberg. The U.S. has been working to limit China's access to advanced technology for some time, and it has already limited sales of extreme ultra-violet (EUV), which is used to develop chips at the most advanced process nodes. DUV, in contrast, is used for older-nod... » read more

High-NA EUV May Be Closer Than It Appears


High-NA EUV is on track to enable scaling down to the Angstrom level, setting the stage for chips with even higher transistor counts and a whole new wave of tools, materials, and system architectures. At the recent SPIE Advanced Lithography conference, Mark Phillips, director of lithography hardware and solutions at Intel, reiterated the company’s intention to deploy the technology in high... » read more

Startup Funding: May 2022


May was another strong month for China as it continues its push to build a native semiconductor ecosystem. Over half the month's total funding went to startups in the country. Over half the companies funded were from China as well, including two FPGA companies, three making CPUs, a GPU startup, and numerous networking and wireless chip companies. Two of those, in FPGAs and CPUs, raised rounds s... » read more

Week In Review: Manufacturing, Test


Broadcom announced it will acquire cloud computing and virtualization company VMware for about $61 billion in cash and stock, and assume $8 billion in VMware net debt. If all goes as planned, the Broadcom Software Group will rebrand and operate as VMware. “The combined solutions will enable customers, including leaders in all industry verticals, greater choice and flexibility to build, run, m... » read more

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