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Week In Review: Manufacturing, Test

CHIPS Act signed; Micron’s $40B investment; GF/Qualcomm agreement; CyberOptics acquired; earnings; securing chiplets; benchmarking FETs; DoD program

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Government funding
President Biden signed the CHIPS and Science Act into law on Tuesday, saying “America is back and leading the way.”

That same day Micron touted a $40 billion investment through to 2030, which it expects will create 40,000 American jobs. “This legislation will enable Micron to grow domestic production of memory from less than 2% to up to 10% of the global market in the next decade, making the U.S. home to the most advanced memory manufacturing and R&D in the world,” said Micron President and CEO Sanjay Mehrotra.

The day before, GlobalFoundries and Qualcomm announced they are more than doubling their existing strategic global long-term semiconductor manufacturing agreement, previously entered into by GF’s and Qualcomm’s respective subsidiaries. The agreement secures wafer supply and commitments to support U.S.-based manufacturing through capacity expansion at GF’s most advanced semiconductor manufacturing facility in Malta, New York.

And late last week, after Congress passed the legislation, Nikkei Asia reported that Mitsubishi Gas Chemical plans to nearly triple U.S. production of super-pure hydrogen peroxide, investing approximately 50 billion yen ($372 million). The aim is to increase production at its Oregon facility and possible create a new plant.

The $170 billion earmarked for research science couldn’t come a moment too soon. Japan’s National Institute of Science and Technology Policy (NISTP) said that China now publishes more research papers than the U.S, an annual average of 407,181 vs. 293,434 for the U.S.

The European Chips Act is next. Oxford research professor and former director at the European Commission reviewed the issues for the Brookings Institution.

Business
CyberOptics agreed to be acquired by Nordson Corp., which has a line of optical testing equipment, for $54 per share in cash.

PDF Solutions reported Q2 revenue of $34.7 million, up 26% year-over-year.   Analytics revenue increase 59% year-over-year.

Onto Innovation announced Q2 revenue of $256 million, up 33% year-over-year.

Tokyo Electron (TEL) announced fiscal Q1 net sales of 473.6 billion yen, a 4.8% increase year-over-year.

The South China Morning Post reported that Samsung will invest US$3.3 billion to produce components in Vietnam. This comes on top of an earlier investment of US$920 million.

Deals
Siemens Digital Industries Software was selected to participate in the Rapid Assured Microelectronics Prototypes (RAMP) Phase II initiative. RAMP is a program established by the United States Department of Defense (DoD) to develop secure design and prototyping capabilities that demonstrate how the DoD can securely leverage state-of-the-art microelectronics technologies without depending on a closed-security architecture fabrication process or facility. “Expanding our cloud collaboration with Microsoft Azure Government is expected to generate valuable insights that can be fed back into the RAMP program in an effort to enhance the design and security of next-generation integrated circuits derived from the DoD’s RAMP program,” said Michael Buehler-Garcia, vice president of product management for Calibre Design Solutions at Siemens.

Sustainability
Tokyo Electron (TEL) was chosen for “FTSE4Good Index” and “FTSE Blossom Japan Index.” TEL said it will promote sustainability-focused management, which is part of its corporate philosophy.

Research
Researchers at UMass Amherst and Georgia Tech 3D-printed a dual-phase, nanostructured high-entropy alloy that exceeds the strength and ductility of other state-of-the-art additively manufactured materials. The paper, titled “Strong yet ductile nanolamellar high-entropy alloys by additive manufacturing” was published in Nature.

The Florida Institute for Cybersecurity Research (FICS) at the University of Florida has published a paper primarily focused on the secure heterogeneous integration of chiplets, including trust validation methods, attack mitigation and a roadmap toward a trusted system-in-package design.

NIST, Purdue University, and others provide guidelines for reporting and benchmarking FET parameters and performance metrics in this recently published paper.

Further Reading
In case you missed this month’s Test, Measurement & Analytics newsletter, check out the stories on how overlay keeps pace with EUV patterning; why nanosheets are driving changes in metrology and inspection; and how to leverage data lakes.

Upcoming events
Conferences are kicking into high gear. Coming up:

  • SPIE Optics & Photonics, Aug. 21 – 25 (San Diego, CA)
  • TSMC Taiwan Technology Symposium, Aug. 30 (Taiwan)
  • AI Hardware/Edge AI Summit, Sept. 13 – 15 (Santa Clara, CA)
  • Semicon Taiwan, Sept. 14 – 16 (Taipei, Taiwan)
  • SPIE Photonics Industry Summit, Sept. 21 (Washington, D.C.)
  • SPIE Photomask Technology/Extreme Ultraviolet Lithography, Sept. 25 – 29 (Monterey, CA)
  • 55th International Symposium on Microelectronics, Oct. 3 – 6 (Boston)


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