Manufacturing Bits: Aug. 10


EUV mask cleaning process TSMC has developed a new dry-clean technology for photomasks used in extreme ultraviolet (EUV) lithography, a move that appears to solve some major problems in the fab. TSMC and Samsung are in production with EUV lithography at advanced nodes, but there are still several challenges with the photomasks and other parts of the technology. Using 13.5nm wavelengths, EUV... » read more

Power/Performance Bits: May 19


Neuromorphic magnetic nanowires Researchers from the University of Texas at Austin, University of Texas at Dallas, and Sandia National Laboratory propose a neuromorphic computing method using magnetic components. The team says this approach can cut the energy cost of training neural networks. "Right now, the methods for training your neural networks are very energy-intensive," said Jean Ann... » read more

Power/Performance Bits: May 11


Light-emitting silicon Researchers from the Eindhoven University of Technology, Friedrich-Schiller-Universität Jena, Johannes Kepler University, and Technische Universität München developed a silicon germanium alloy that can emit light, paving the way for a silicon laser that could be integrated for on-chip and chip-to-chip communication. Bulk silicon is extremely inefficient at emitting... » read more

COVID-19 Tech Bits


Tech companies, consortiums and universities are jumping in to help fight COVID-19, deploying everything from massive computing capabilities to developing new technologies that can protect medical workers and first responders. Nearly all of these have ramped up over the past several weeks, as the tech world begins to take on a global challenge to combat the deadly virus. Compute resources... » read more

Manufacturing Bits: Feb. 18


Molecular layer etch The U.S. Department of Energy’s Argonne National Laboratory has made new advances in the field of molecular layer etching or etch (MLE). MLE is related to atomic layer etch (ALE). Used in the semiconductor industry, ALE selectively removes targeted materials at the atomic scale without damaging other parts of the structure. ALE is related to atomic layer deposition... » read more

Testing In Context Gaining Ground


Testing in context is beginning to gain wider appeal as chip complexity increases, and as ICs are deployed in more safety-critical and mission-critical applications. While design in context has been the norm for SoCs for some time, a similar approach in test has been slow going. Cell-aware testing technology was first described a decade ago, and since then its adoption has been modest. But w... » read more

Blog Review: Dec. 4


Arm's Rupal Gandhi digs into the Cell-Aware Test methodology to deterministically target the growing number of defects that occur within the cells, the process of CAT library generation, and compares the static and transition patterns generated. Cadence's Paul McLellan shares highlights from the recent WOSET event with a look at the big drivers for the current interest in open-source EDA too... » read more

Manufacturing Bits: March 26


ALD materials database Atomic Limits, a blog site that addresses atomic-level processing technologies, has developed an online database listing all atomic layer deposition (ALD) materials and processes. The database could be useful for ALD processes in semiconductors and other fields. ALD is a deposition technique that deposits materials one layer at a time. In ALD systems, wafers are place... » read more

Power/Performance Bits: Mar. 11


Reading qubits faster Researchers at Aalto University and VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland propose a faster way to read information from qubits, the building blocks of quantum computers. Currently, they are extremely sensitive to disruption even in cryogenic environments, holding quantum information for less than a millisecond. In the method now used to read information from a qubit... » read more

Manufacturing Bits: Feb. 5


Multi-beam litho shakeout The multi-beam e-beam market for lithography applications continues to undergo a shakeout amid technical roadblocks and other issues. Last week, ASML announced that it had acquired the intellectual-property (IP) assets of Mapper Lithography, a Dutch supplier of multi-beam e-beam tools for lithography applications that fell into bankruptcy late last year. As it t... » read more

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