Week In Review: Manufacturing, Test


Trade Trade tensions between the United States and China continue. The U.S. last year slapped a 10% tariff on $200 billion worth of Chinese goods. China retaliated with a 10% tariff on $60 billion of U.S. imports. The U.S. said it wants to increase the tariffs on Chinese goods to 25%, but that action has been postponed. This was the week that the U.S. was supposed to raise tariffs by 25%. I... » read more

Fab Equipment Challenges For 2019


After a period of record growth, the semiconductor equipment industry is facing a slowdown in 2019, in addition to several technical challenges that still need to be resolved. Generally, the equipment industry saw enormous demand in 2017, and the momentum extended into the first part of 2018. But then the memory market began deteriorating in the middle of this year, causing both DRAM and NAND ... » read more

2018 eBeam Initiative Perceptions Survey Results


EUV confidence and multi-beam remains high in the 7th Annual Perceptions Survey – 2018 (July). EUV perceptions remain positive. 82% of respondents predict EUV in HVM by end of 2021. Only 1% predict EUV will never happen. Confidence is high again for EUV lithography in high-volume manufacturing and expectations continue to grow around actinic mask inspection for EUV. Perceptions on the nee... » read more

EUV Mask Blank Battle Brewing


Amid the ramp of extreme ultraviolet (EUV) lithography in the market, suppliers of EUV mask blanks are expanding their production. And a new player—Applied Materials—is looking to enter the market. AGC and Hoya, the two main suppliers of EUV mask blanks, are adding capacity for these critical components that are used for EUV photomasks. A mask blank serves as the substrate for a photomas... » read more

Week In Review: Manufacturing, Test


Chipmakers GlobalFoundries and the Chengdu municipality have signed an amendment and changed the strategy of their joint fab investment in Chengdu, China. Originally, GlobalFoundries was supposed to install 180nm/130nm processes in the China-based 300mm fab. The partners have decided to bypass that technology. Intead, the fab will start with GlobalFoundries’ 22nm FD-SOI process. “Ch... » read more

Blog Review: Oct. 24


Arm's Shidhartha Das digs into Power Delivery Networks with a look at how the specific roles of different components work to provide smooth supply conditions. In a video, VLSI Research's Dan Hutcheson chats with D2S CEO Aki Fujimura about the state of the photomask market, EUV optimism, and the most interesting findings from this year's eBeam Initiative survey. Synopsys' Prasad Subudhi K.... » read more

EUV Pellicle, Uptime And Resist Issues Continue


Extreme ultraviolet (EUV) lithography is moving closer to realization, but several problems involving scanner uptime, photoresists and pellicles need to be resolved before this long-overdue technology is put into full production. Intel, Samsung and TSMC are hoping to insert EUV into production at 7nm and/or 5nm. While the remaining issues don’t necessarily pre-empt using EUV, they do affec... » read more

Week In Review: Manufacturing, Test


Tariffs The Office of the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR) has released a list of $200 billion worth of Chinese imports that will be subject to tariffs. These actions are on top of another set of tariffs, which were put in place. The additional tariffs will be effective starting Sept. 24, and initially will be in the amount of 10%. Starting Jan. 1, 2019, the level of the additional tariffs wi... » read more

Survey: EUV Optimism Grows


The confidence level remains high for extreme ultraviolet (EUV) lithography, although the timing of the insertion remains a moving target, according to a new survey released by the eBeam Initiative. At the same time, the outlook for the overall photomask industry is bullish, according to the survey. On the downside, however, there appears to be no progress in terms of improving mask turnaro... » read more

Fabs Meet Machine Learning


Aki Fujimura, chief executive of D2S, sat down with Semiconductor Engineering to discuss Moore’s Law and photomask technology. Fujimura also explained how artificial intelligence and machine learning are impacting the IC industry. What follows are excerpts of that conversation. SE: For some time, you’ve said we need more compute power. So we need faster chips at advanced nodes, but cost... » read more

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