The Crystal Growth Laboratory group of the Autonoma University of Madrid is looking for companies or research institutes interested in equipment for the preparation of single crystals with high melting point. Collaboration could include licence agreements, marketing, information exchange or training.
The European Union and the USA are on the verge of agreement on the Galileo and GPS satellite radio navigation systems. Discussion on cohabitation between the EU’s Galileo and the American GPS systems began four years ago.
Infineon Technologies has expanded its activities in China, setting up an IC design centre and an associated subsidiary. Infineon Technologies Xi’an is located at the Xi'an High-Tech Park. The new design centre will focus on developing applications for communications, automotive and industrial electronics. Infineon will also work with two local universities.
Systems on Silicon Manufacturing (SSMC) plans to spend $250mn in 2004 on capacity expansion that will increase output to 33,000 200mm wafers per month in the near-term with a larger increase in the future.
Engineers from Lasertechnik Berlin (LTB) have produced a spectrometer based on an echelle grating that can measure a minimal linewidth of 20fm (2E-14m) full width and half maximum (FWHM) at a wavelength of 193nm (1.93E-7m). LTB Lasertechnik says that this surpasses its own record of 60fm.
Nikon says that it sees no major hurdles blocking the development of extreme ultraviolet lithography (EUVL) systems. The company plans to start full-scale product development in 2004. A system is due for launch by 2006. The tool will be targeted at mass production of 45nm DRAMs and 32nm microprocessors.
Sportswear producer O’Neill Europe has joined with Infineon Technologies on a joint product development project for ‘wearable electronics’. Based on O’Neill’s specifications, Infineon has developed a chip module suitable for integration into a snowboard jacket. This technology enables Bluetooth mobile phone and MP3 player use. The product, called "THE HUB", will be part of O’Neill’s 2004/05 winter collection.
France’s CEA-Leti Advanced R&D Centre has bought a Rudolph Technologies S300-ultra metrology system. The tool will be used on the Nanotec 300 programme - a consortium involving STMicroelectronics, Philips and Motorola. Nanotec 300 focuses on developing 300mm processes that will transfer to production at 45nm. Nanotec 300 will use the S300-ultra for measuring the ultra-thin transparent films required for advanced gates including thin oxides and high-k dielectrics.
Infineon Technologies has introduced a 512Mbit Flash memory chip based on a technology called TwinFlash. The NAND compatible chip was developed by Infineon Technologies Flash - a joint venture of Infineon Technologies and Saifun Semiconductors. Initial production has started at Infineon's 200mm DRAM facility in Dresden, Germany.
The semiconductor units of Philips Electronics and Samsung Electronics launched a Universal Home Application Programming Interface (UH-API) initiative. This will allow independent software vendors (ISVs), system integrators and device vendors to create middleware and application software on top of semiconductor-based systems. Philips and Samsung plan to invite other companies to participate in enhancing and deploying the UH-API specification throughout the consumer electronics industry.
German and Austrian scientists report theoretical calculations of interface formation for proposed high-k gate oxide strontium titanate on silicon (Nature, January 1, 2004). The researchers propose an interface structure that is "quite different and much simpler than previously assumed". Two types of interface are seen in the calculations that can be formed selectively in the absence of an interfacial silicon dioxide layer.
STMicroelectronics acquired UK wireless-LAN chip developer Synad Technologies. The acquired company has a full dual-band (2.4/5GHz) multi-standard CMOS production-ready chipset and reference design, and software suites for both wireless-LAN access point and client applications. The products are designed for a 180nm CMOS process.
Market researcher Gartner has released world semiconductor capital and equipment spending estimates for 2004. Capital spending is set to increase 27.9% on 2003’s $28.94bn to $37.11bn. Capital equipment is expected to see an even bigger leap of 35.9% from $21.74bn to $29.54bn.
Infineon Technologies plans to spin off its European real estate and facility management activities to Dussmann of Berlin. Further, Air Liquide (Duesseldorf) and Kinetics (Eschau/Hobbach) will take over operation of gas and chemicals supply and distribution at Infineon’s European production sites. Relevant agreements have already been signed. The relevant functions will be transferred to Infineon’s outsourcing partners in H1 2004.
The (TUM) Walter Schottky Institute (WSI) has ordered an AIX 200/4 MOCVD system from Aixtron. The WSI will use the new system for studies on long wavelength vertical cavity surface emitting laser (VCSEL) layer structures with a unique buried tunnel junction (BTJ) architecture.
Wacker Siltronic has successfully started the first processing step at its new 300mm wafer fab at Freiberg in the German state of Saxony. The first 300 mm monocrystalline ingot was sliced into thin wafers on schedule, December 3, 2003.
ASML MaskTools and Photronics plan to jointly develop a production-ready, mask making infrastructure for ASML MaskTools’ patented chromeless phase lithography (CPL) technology. CPL is a single mask, single exposure resolution enhancement technique that enables low k1 lithography at advanced technology nodes.