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Week In Review: Auto, Security, Pervasive Computing


An investigation by the Automobile Association of America found that lane-keeping assist and automatic emergency braking, both high-profile ADAS features, are prone to failure in rain. According to the report, 69% of tests conducted with simulated rainfall resulted in test vehicles crossing lane markers, and 33% of simulations resulted in collisions at 35 mph. Surprisingly, risk of accidents di... » read more

Week In Review: Manufacturing, Test


Market research For some time, the semiconductor industry has experienced acute shortages. The automotive industry has suffered the most. When will this all end? “Shortages have become more acute for many products in the near term because the growth in demand is greater than the increase in wafer and packaging capacity that was anticipated by the foundry and semiconductor vendors. To date... » read more

FeFETs Bring Promise And Challenges


Ferroelectric FETs (FeFETs) and memory (FeRAM) are generating high levels of interest in the research community. Based on a physical mechanism that hasn’t yet been commercially exploited, they join the other interesting new physics ideas that are in various stages of commercialization. “FeRAM is very promising, but it's like all promising memory technologies — it takes a while to get b... » read more

Manufacturing Bits: July 10


Semicon West It’s Semicon West time again. Here’s the first wave of announcements at the event: Applied Materials has unveiled a pair of tools aimed at accelerating the industry adoption for new memories. First, Applied rolled out the Endura Clover MRAM PVD system. The system is an integrated platform for MRAM devices. Second, the company introduced the Endura Impulse PVD platform for P... » read more

What’s the Right Path For Scaling?


The growing challenges of traditional chip scaling at advanced nodes are prompting the industry to take a harder look at different options for future devices. Scaling is still on the list, with the industry laying plans for 5nm and beyond. But less conventional approaches are becoming more viable and gaining traction, as well, including advanced packaging and in-memory computing. Some option... » read more

Manufacturing Bits: Jan. 30


SRC’s new R&D centers The Semiconductor Research Corp. has launched a network of research centers within its recently-announced Joint University Microelectronics Program (JUMP). SRC officially launched the 5-year, $200 million program on Jan. 1. With various research centers, the mission of JUMP is to lay the groundwork that extends the viability of Moore’s Law through 2040. The idea is... » read more

System Bits: June 13


Nimble-fingered robots enabled by deep learning Grabbing awkwardly shaped items that humans regularly pick up daily is not so easy for robots, as they don’t know where to apply grip. To overcome this, UC Berkeley researchers have a built a robot that can pick up and move unfamiliar, real-world objects with a 99% success rate. Berkeley professor Ken Goldberg, postdoctoral researcher Jeff M... » read more

Power/Performance Bits: June 7


Tiny lasers on silicon A group of scientists from Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, the University of California, Santa Barbara, Sandia National Laboratories, and Harvard University were able to fabricate tiny lasers directly on silicon. To do this, they first had to resolve silicon crystal lattice defects to a point where the cavities were essentially equivalent to those gr... » read more

Power/Performance Bits: Dec. 23


GaN building blocks A team of engineers from Cornell University, the University of Notre Dame, and the semiconductor company IQE created gallium nitride (GaN) power diodes capable of serving as the building blocks for future GaN power switches. In spite of having many desirable features as a material, GaN is notorious for its defects and reliability issues. So the team zeroed in on device... » read more

Week 6: Still In Wow-Land


While the conflicts around the world are overshadowing my complete euphoria, I have to admit that I’m still in Fussball wow-land right now. Germany won the World Cup! What an amazing goal from youngster Mario Goetze! Here is what the 22-year-old forward from Bayern-Muenchen had to say after the game: “Andre [Schurrle] put in a superb ball and I was able to control it on my chest, then someh... » read more

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