SIGMA-C has updated its lithography simulation software for immersion. SOLID-C 6.4 now focuses on technical obstacles that hinder the adoption of immersion lithography. This is achieved by expanding the capability to simulate arbitrary polarisation in source, projector and mask to mitigate the so-called "hyper-NA effects". Radial-, azimuthal- or even completely user-defined polarisation can be analysed.
The European Commission (EC) NaPa project on emerging nanopatterning methods aims at integrating top down miniaturisation and bottom-up self-assembly fabrication approaches. NaPa aims to build upon know-how acquired in different countries and in several projects funded within the EC Framework 5 (FP5) research structure.
International Rectifier has opened a research and design centre in Denmark for advanced high-reliability DC-to-DC converters and other power management solutions. IR Denmark ApS (IRD) is located in Skovlunde near Copenhagen.
Optoelectronic chipmaker Intense is expanding headcount and facilities at its UK semiconductor fabrication plant in Glasgow from 50 in late 2003 to 65 now. The company’s initial focus on the telecom sector has been broadened to markets such as printing and defence.
Intel Capital has made an equity investment in Italian optics manufacturer Media Lario International for the development of key optical components for extreme ultraviolet (EUV) lithography, due for commercialisation by 2009 (32nm node).
Corning Tropel announced commercial availability of an immersion micro-objective lens, the AquaCAT. This new lens assembly is aimed at extending 193nm lithography capabilities. In a Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT) laboratory, site of the new product's first installation, an AquaCAT micro-objective recently yielded image resolution of less than 100nm.
Wacker’s Siltronic silicon wafer division has signed a license for Soitec's proprietary Smart Cut technology to produce silicon-on-insulator (SOI) and strained SOI wafers. A joint programme between the companies aims to accelerate the development of strained SOI wafers. Siltronic will be able to provide bonded SOI wafers based on Smart Cut in 2005.
SUSS MicroTec reports that it has delivered the world's first semi-automatic pressure chamber prober to their MEMUNITY partner DELTA (Danish Electronics Light and Acoustics). The PAP200 probes in a controlled environment from 1mbar vacuum up to 50bar - the pressure at 500m below sea level.
SUSS MicroTec’s French subsidiary has signed a joint development programme agreement with European microelectronics research centre IMEC on bonding technologies for micro-electro-mechanical system (MEMS) production.
Researchers at Infineon Technologies says that they have succeeded, for the first time, in using carbon nanotubes to manufacture power semiconductors. The nanotube switch can control light emitting diodes (LEDs) or electric motors. The scientists consider this a breakthrough, since it was previously assumed that atomic-scale components were not suitable for the high voltages and currents used in power applications.
UK-based AML has abandoned the design house/foundry model for the fabrication of micro-electro-mechanical system (MEMS) devices that it has been pursuing for a number of years. The company says that the approach does not work since the foundry production processes are too inflexible for the fabrication of the wide variety of MEMS devices being proposed – it’s like asking the Mini car production line in Oxford, UK, to make coffee cups.
Bilkent University of Ankara in Turkey has ordered an AIX 200/4 RF-S MOCVD system from Aixtron. Bilkent's Department of Physics has decided on a new research focus - AlGaN based devices used as UV photodetectors. These devices could be used in medical applications. Bilkent has invested in a new institute building with cleanroom facilities to house this activity.
Nikon says that it has accelerated its development plans for ArF immersion and will ship a system with a projection lens numerical aperture (NA) of greater than or equal to 1.0 in H2 2005. Nikon's previous plan was to market an immersion system with an NA of 0.92 by mid 2005.
STMicroelectronics inaugurated its third state-of-the-art design and development facility in India at Noida, near New Delhi. The new wing will be able to house 550 additional skilled design/embedded software engineers.
Infineon Technologies has joined the X Initiative semiconductor supply-chain consortium. Infineon has tested its X Architecture manufacturing readiness with the successful fabrication of a 130nm test chip and plans to further validate production designs in 2004.
The European Commission approved investment aid in favour of Wacker Siltronic for the construction of a new plant for the production of 300mm wafers in Freiberg, Saxony. The aid authorised covers 28% gross of eligible investment costs of EUR431.8mn. This investment project is expected create about 634 jobs directly with the firm and more than 223 additional jobs in the assisted region.
ThyssenKrupp Hoesch Bausysteme has ordered 1MW of photovoltaic (PV) panels from United Solar Ovonic, a supplier of thin-film amorphous-silicon solar technology. Thyssen will use the panels in Germany’s building-integrated PV market. Panels capable of producing 500kW have already been shipped. The balance will be shipped before April 2004.
Infineon Technologies’ researchers will be presenting a range of new technologies at the International Solid-State Circuits Conference (ISSCC 2004) this week. These presentations consist of papers on DNA sensor chips, RFID circuits/packaging and an analogue digital converter (ADC) built on a 90nm process, along with four separate papers on high-speed communications circuits.
IBM has used a combination of silicon-on-insulator (SOI), strained silicon and copper wiring technologies to manufacture low power, high performance microprocessors. The integration of the three leading edge techniques is claimed as an industry first.
Sony and Toshiba are to collaborate in the development of 45nm process and design technologies for next-generation system large-scale integration (LSI). This extends the companies’ successful development of 65nm process technologies to the next level. Positive 45nm results are expected in 2005.
All of STMicroelectronics’ relevant manufacturing sites have achieved certification to the occupational health and safety management system OHSAS 18001 specification. ST reports that it is the first global semiconductor manufacturer in the world to achieve this.