Week In Review: Manufacturing, Test


Packaging and test In the rankings, ASE was the top OSAT in terms of sales in the first quarter of 2019, according to TrendForce. Amkor and JCET were next in the rankings. “Judging from the falling phone sales 1Q19 impacted by the U.S.-China trade dispute and the oversupply situation in memory markets, the total revenue of the top ten businesses in packaging and testing are predicted to st... » read more

Week in Review: IoT, Security, Auto


Internet of Things The Wing unit of Alphabet this summer will begin making drone deliveries in the Vuosarri district of Helsinki, Finland. The unmanned aerial vehicles will bear food and other items from Herkku Food, a gourmet market, and the Café Monami restaurant. The drones will bear deliveries of up to 3.3 pounds over distances of up to 6.2 miles. Comcast is reportedly developing an in... » read more

Week In Review: Design, Low Power


M&A Marvell will acquire Avera Semiconductor, the ASIC business of GlobalFoundries, for $650 million in cash at closing plus an additional $90 million in cash if certain business conditions are satisfied within the next 15 months. The agreements include transfer of Avera's revenue base, strategic design wins with infrastructure OEMs, and a new long-term wafer supply agreement between Globa... » read more

Partitioning In 3D


The best way to improve transistor density isn't necessarily to cram more of them onto a single die. Moore’s Law in its original form stated that device density doubles about every two years while cost remains constant. It relied on the observation that the cost of a processed silicon wafer remained constant regardless of the number of devices printed on it, which in turn depended on litho... » read more

Challenges In Making And Testing STT-MRAM


Several chipmakers are ramping up a next-generation memory type called STT-MRAM, but there are still an assortment of manufacturing and test challenges for current and future devices. STT-MRAM, or spin-transfer torque MRAM, is attractive and gaining steam because it combines the attributes of several conventional memory types in a single device. In the works for years, STT-MRAM features the ... » read more

Breakthrough For Scan Diagnosis With Machine Learning


Cell-aware diagnosis is a new and effective way to detect defects inside standard cells. Industry standard failure analysis (FA) results from a major foundry show that cell-aware diagnosis is very effective at increasing the resolution of the diagnosis by reducing the number of suspects in cell-internal defect data. With advanced technology nodes, we have more complex layout structures and f... » read more

Creating A Roadmap For Hardware Security


The U.S. Department of Defense and private industry consortiums are developing comprehensive and cohesive cybersecurity plans that will serve as blueprints for military, industrial and commercial systems. What is particularly noteworthy in all of these efforts is the focus on semiconductors. While software can be patched, vulnerabilities such as Spectre, Meltdown and Foreshadow need to be de... » read more

Week In Review: Manufacturing, Test


Fab tools and test Lam Research has developed a new self-maintaining or self-cleaning chamber for its etch tools. With the technology, Lam announced a new industry benchmark has been set for productivity in etch processing using its self-maintaining equipment. Etch process modules are typically cleaned weekly or monthly. Recently, Lam and a chipmaker reached the milestone of going 365 days... » read more

Week In Review: Manufacturing, Test


Chipmakers Here comes the battle between 5nm and 6nm processes at two foundry vendors—Samsung and TSMC. Meanwhile, Intel is behind and scrambling to get 10nm out the door. (Intel's 10nm is equivalent to 7nm from the foundries.) Last week, TSMC announced delivery of a complete version of its 5nm design infrastructure. TSMC’s 5nm technology is based on a finFET. This week, Samsung anno... » read more

3D NAND Metrology Challenges Growing


3D NAND vendors face several challenges to scale their devices to the next level, but one manufacturing technology stands out as much more difficult at each turn—metrology. Metrology, the art of measuring and characterizing structures, is used to pinpoint problems and ensure yields for all chip types. In the case of 3D NAND, the metrology tools are becoming more expensive at each iteration... » read more

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