I used my secret powers (being a blogger will get you a press pass) to go to the first day of the SPIE conference on advanced lithography a couple of weeks ago. Everything that happens to with process nodes seems to be driven by lithography, and everything that happens in EDA is driven by semiconductor process. It is the place to find … Read More
I was at the Common Platform Technology Forum this week. One of the most interesting sessions is IBM’s Gary Patton giving an overview of the state of semiconductor fabrication. Then, at lunchtime, he is one of the people that the press can question. In this post, I’m going to focus on Extreme Ultra-Violet (EUV) lithography.… Read More
I didn’t attend the International Electronic Device Meeting (IEDM) earlier this month, but there have been a lot of reports on the inter webs especially about 20nm and 14nm processes. Some of this is really geeky stuff but I think that perhaps the most interesting thing I’ve read about is summarized in this chart:
This… Read More
It is ‘Quarterly’ financial report time for many companies and one can occasionally find some interesting snippets in the transcripts of the calls which normally accompany these announcements. For example, SanDisk appear to have an encouraging quarter, reversing sales declines seen through Q1 and Q2. However, what caught … Read More
At Semicon a few weeks ago the big news was that Intel was making a big investment in ASML as a way of funding two development programs: extreme ultra-violet (EUV) and 450mm wafers. This week TSMC announced that they would join the program too, committing 275M Euros over a five year period. They are also taking a 5% stake in ASML. ASML… Read More
Thisblog with a chart showing that the cost of given functionality on a chip is no longer going to fall is, I think, one of the most-read I’ve ever written on Semiwiki. It is actually derived from data nVidia presented about TSMC, so at some level perhaps it is two alpha males circling each other preparing for a fight. Or, in this… Read More
There’s a dirty secret problem about EUV that people don’t seem to to be talking about. There’s no pellicle on a EUV mask. OK, probably you have no idea what that means, a lot of jargon words, nor why it would be important, but it seems to me it could be the killer problem for EUV.
In refractive masks, you print a pattern… Read More
This is really the second part to this blog about the challenges of EUV lithography. The next speaker was Franklin Kalk who is CTO of Toppan Photomasks. He too emphasized that we can make almost arbitrarily small features but more and more masks are required (not, that I suspect, he would complain being in the mask business). For EUV… Read More
EUV is the great hope for avoiding having to go to triple (and more) patterning if we have to stick with 193nm light. There were several presentations at Semicon about the status of EUV. Here I’ll discuss the issues with EUV lithography and in a separate post discuss the issues about making masks for EUV.
It is probably worth … Read More
Behind great humor often lies irony. In the midst of a struggle by the European Union to extract $1.3B from Intel in an ages old Anti-Trust case, the latter makes a strategic move to embolden the Dutch firm ASML to accelerate the development of 450mm and EUV and thus save a continental jewel. What now say EU? When disfunction and bankruptcy… Read More