Week In Review: Manufacturing, Test


Market research For some time, China has faced an enormous trade gap in semiconductors. In response, China has been developing its semiconductor industry with plans to make more of its chips. But China is expected to fall far short of its “Made in China 2025” goals for IC production, according to IC Insights. “IC Insights forecasts China-produced ICs will represent only 19.4% of its I... » read more

Week In Review: Manufacturing, Test


Chipmakers and OEMs Third Point, a hedge fund, released a letter, saying that Intel needs to explore its strategic alternatives. This includes the breakup of the chip giant. Obtained by Yahoo and others, the letter says Intel needs to decide “whether Intel should remain an integrated device manufacturer” and should divest certain failed acquisitions. Here’s another analysis of the sit... » read more

Variation Threat In Advanced Nodes, Packages Grows


Variation is becoming a much bigger and more complex problem for chipmakers as they push to the next process nodes or into increasingly dense advanced packages, raising concerns about the functionality and reliability of individual devices, and even entire systems. In the past, almost all concerns about variation focused on the manufacturing process. What printed on a piece of silicon didn't... » read more

Does HW Vs. SW Choice Affect Quality And Reliability?


Electronic systems comprise both hardware and software. Which functions are implemented with hardware and which with software are decisions made based upon a wide variety of considerations, including concerns about quality and reliability. Hardware may intrinsically provide for higher device quality, but it is also the source of reliability concerns. This is in contrast with popular views of... » read more

Case Study: Monitoring Humidity To Reduce Reticle Haze Effects


Understanding reticle haze: Without proper control measures, immersion technology scanners are affected by an adverse phenomenon called “haze.” Haze is caused by a combination of three specific factors: Click here to continue reading. » read more

Week In Review: Manufacturing, Test


Chipmakers AMD and Xilinx have entered into a definitive agreement for AMD to acquire Xilinx in an all-stock transaction valued at $35 billion. With the proposed deal, AMD will enter the FPGA business, putting it further in competition with Intel. The transaction has been unanimously approved by the AMD and Xilinx boards. The transaction is expected to close by the end of calendar year 2021. U... » read more

Defect Challenges Grow For IC Packaging


Several vendors are ramping up new inspection equipment based on infrared, optical, and X-ray technologies in an effort to reduce defects in current and future IC packages. While all of these technologies are necessary, they also are complementary. No one tool can meet all defect inspection requirements. As a result, packaging vendors may need to buy more and different tools. For years, p... » read more

Much Smarter Manufacturing


Smart manufacturing is undergoing some fundamental changes as more sensors are integrated across fabs to generate more usable data, and as AI/ML systems are deployed to sift through that data and identify patterns and anomalies more quickly. The concept of smart manufacturing — also referred to as Industrie 4.0 in Europe, for the fourth industrial revolution — emerged from the World Econ... » read more

Making Chips To Last Their Expected Lifetimes


Chips are supposed to last their lifetime, but that expectation varies greatly depending upon the end market, whether the device is used for safety- or mission-critical applications, and even whether it can be easily replaced or remotely fixed. It also depends on how those chips are used, whether they are an essential part of a complex system, and whether the cost of continual monitoring and... » read more

Demand Grows For Reducing PCB Defects


Board manufacturers are boosting their investment in inspection, test and analytics to meet the increasingly stringent demands for reliability in safety-critical sectors like automotive. This represents a significant shift from the past, where concerns about reliability primarily targeted the devices connected to printed circuit boards. But as SoCs become disaggregated into advanced packages... » read more

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