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Week In Review: Manufacturing, Test


Chipmakers Amid ongoing delays with its 10nm process, Intel has reorganized its manufacturing unit, according to a report from The Oregonian/OregonLive. Sohail Ahmed, who has jointly led the unit since 2016, will retire next month, according to the report. The industry is racing to put extreme ultraviolet (EUV) lithography into production. TSMC recently taped-out its first 7nm chip using E... » 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

Atomic Layer Etching: Rethinking the Art of Etch


Atomic layer etching (ALE) is the most advanced etching technique in production today. In this Perspective, we describe ALE in comparison to long-standing conventional etching techniques, relating it to the underlying principles behind the ancient art of etching. Once considered too slow, we show how leveraging plasma has made ALE a thousand times faster than earlier approaches. While Si is the... » read more

Cryogenic Etch Re-Emerges


After years in R&D, a technology called cryogenic etch is re-emerging as a possible option for production as the industry faces new challenges in memory and logic. Cryogenic etch removes materials in devices with high aspect ratios at cold temperatures, although it has always been a challenging process. Cryogenic etch is difficult to control and it requires specialized cryogenic gases in... » read more

SiC Chip Demand Surges


The silicon carbide (SiC) power semiconductor market is experiencing a sudden surge in demand amid growth for electric vehicles and other systems. But the demand also is causing a tight supply of SiC-based devices in the market, prompting some vendors to add fab capacity in the midst of a tricky wafer-size transition. Some SiC device makers are transitioning from 4- to 6-inch wafers in the f... » read more

Industry 4.0: The Smart Industrial Revolution


As consumers, we see evidence of the Internet of Things (IoT) all around us. A growing number of everyday objects in our homes and cars are now digitally connected in a way that allows us to interact with them. Even mundane items such as keychains and wallets can be made smart with trackers and mobile device apps. A similar revolution is occurring in some workplaces, with the growing ability to... » read more

Blog Review: Sept. 19


Applied Materials' David Thompson shares the new DARPA program that is focused on using correlated electrons to develop a new type of switch with quantum effects, potentially leading to unprecedented switching speeds. Mentor's Joe Hupcey III argues that for the most effective formal analysis, assertions should be as simple as possible and shares some tips on decomposing big assertions. Ca... » read more

Using AI In Chip Manufacturing


David Fried, CTO at Coventor, a Lam Research Company, sat down with Semiconductor Engineering to talk about how AI and Big Data techniques will be used to improve yield and quality in chip manufacturing. What follows are excerpts of that conversation. SE: We used to think about manufacturing data in terms of outliers, but as tolerances become tighter at each new node that data may need to b... » read more

3D NAND Flash Wars Begin


3D NAND suppliers are gearing up for a new battle amid a period of price and competitive pressures, racing each other to the next technology generations. Competition is intensifying as a new player enters the 3D NAND market—China’s Yangtze Memory Technologies Co. (YMTC). Backed by billions of dollars in funding from the Chinese government, YMTC recently introduced its first 3D NAND techn... » read more

Week In Review: Manufacturing, Test


Trade wars It’s difficult to keep up with the U.S.-China trade war. In the latest event, the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR) recently released a 25% tariff on $16 billion in imports from China. This includes 29 tariff lines that represent the heart of the semiconductor industry, according to SEMI. “SEMI, along with hundreds of companies, including Lam Research and KLA-Tencor, submitted wr... » read more

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