Will China Succeed In Memory?


China's fledging memory makers are expected to reach a major milestone and move into initial production this year, although vendors are already running into various roadblocks. China's domestic vendors are focusing on two markets, 3D NAND and DRAM. In both cases local vendors are either behind in technology, struggling to develop these products, or both. And one vendor recently was hit with ... » read more

What EUV Brings To The Table


After many years of hearing that EUV is almost ready for prime time, the tide is finally coming in. A decade of slow but steady progress has resulted in exposure tools that can expose on the order of 1,000 wafers a day on a regular basis. This may be shy of the requirements for high volume manufacturing (HVM), but it is certainly more than enough to support solid development programs and pilot ... » read more

Transistor Options Beyond 3nm


Despite a slowdown in chip scaling amid soaring costs, the industry continues to search for a new transistor type 5 to 10 years out—particularly for the 2nm and 1nm nodes. Specifically, the industry is pinpointing and narrowing down the transistor options for the next major nodes after 3nm. Those two nodes, called 2.5nm and 1.5nm, are slated to appear in 2027 and 2030, respectively, accord... » read more

EUV Reticle Print Verification With Advanced Broadband Optical Wafer Inspection And e-Beam Review Systems


As the Extreme Ultraviolet (EUV) lithography ecosystem is being actively mapped out to enable sub-7nm design rule devices, there is an immediate and imperative need to identify the EUV reticle (mask) inspection methodologies. The introduction of additional particle sources due to the vacuum system and potential growth of haze defects or other film or particle depositions on the reticle, in comb... » read more

Fan-Out Wars Begin


Several packaging houses are developing the next wave of high-density fan-out packages for premium smartphones, but perhaps a bigger battle is brewing in the lower density fan-out arena. Amkor, ASE, STATS ChipPAC and others sell traditional low-density fan-out packages, although some new and competitive technologies are beginning to appear in the market. Low-density fan-out, or sometimes cal... » read more

The Week In Review: Manufacturing


Chipmakers The IC industry continues to consolidate. For example, Qualcomm has a proposed plan to buy NXP. And then, Broadcom wants to buy Qualcomm. Who is next? In a research note, RBC Capital Markets analyst Mitch Steves said: “According to Bloomberg, Microsemi is exploring a sale and we think logical acquirers could include Skyworks. We continue to view Microsemi as a notable strategic as... » read more

Automotive IC Industry Trends


A trend that will continue in 2018 is the rise of the smart, autonomous car. As consumers and regulators demand more capability from automobiles, semiconductors have become the most critical part of these innovative solutions. But these chips, designed to bring safety and economy to the car’s operation, also bring complexity and higher requirements for reliability, requirements that have not ... » read more

Understanding Process And Design Systematics


As design rules shrink, semiconductor manufacturing becomes more complex which leads to a huge increase in the defects which could cause a non-yielding die. Process control and inline defect analysis becomes widely relevant to help shorten the learning process from R&D to production. This paper discusses the various methodologies which leverage patterned wafer inspection tools to help analyze d... » read more

E-beam Inspection Makes Inroads


E-beam inspection is gaining traction in critical areas in fab production as it is becoming more difficult to find tiny defects with traditional methods at advanced nodes. Applied Materials, ASML/HMI and others are developing new e-beam inspection tools and/or techniques to solve some of the more difficult defect issues in the fab. [gettech id="31057" t_name="E-beam"] inspection is one of tw... » read more

The Next 5 Years Of Chip Technology


Semiconductor Engineering sat down to discuss the future of scaling, the impact of variation, and the introduction of new materials and technologies, with Rick Gottscho, CTO of [getentity id="22820" comment="Lam Research"]; Mark Dougherty, vice president of advanced module engineering at [getentity id="22819" comment="GlobalFoundries"]; David Shortt, technical fellow at [getentity id="22876" co... » read more

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