Author Archives: Sandra Liu

SEMulator3D Honored as UBM ACE Award Finalist

For Immediate Release
For more information, contact:
Toni Sottak
(408) 876-4418
toni@wiredislandpr.com

SEMulator3D Honored as UBM ACE Award Finalist

Coventor’s Virtual Fabrication Platform Recognized for Significantly Improving Electronics Manufacturing

CARY, NC– November 17, 2017 – Coventor®, Inc. a Lam Research Company and leading supplier of virtual fabrication solutions for semiconductor and micro-electromechanical systems (MEMS) devices, today announced its 3D virtual fabrication platform, SEMulator3D®, has been named a finalist in UBM’s annual ACE Awards competition.

The ACE (Annual Creativity in Electronics) Awards, in partnership with EE Times and EDN, showcase the best of the best in today’s electronics industry, including the hottest new products, start-up companies, design teams, executives, and more. ACE finalists and winners are hand selected by a panel of EE Times and EDN editors as well as independent judges from the across the industry. read more…

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Overlay Challenges On The Rise

By MARK LAPEDUS

The overlay metrology equipment market is heating up at advanced nodes as the number of masking layers grows and the size of the features that need to be aligned continue to shrink.

Both ASML and KLA-Tencor recently introduced new overlay metrology systems, seeking to address the increasing precision required for lines, cuts and other features on each layer. At 10/7nm, there may be 80 or more masking layers, versus 40 at 28nm. And if those layers are not precisely measured, the features being patterned, deposited and etched may not line up from one layer to the next.

read the full article here.

Technical Tidbits from IWLPC and MSEC 2017

By Francoise von Trapp

It’s been a busy few weeks for me as I attended both the International Wafer Level Packaging Conference (IWLPC), October 24-26, 2017 at the DoubleTree in San Jose and SEMI-MSIG’s MEMS and Sensors Executive Congress, October 31-Nov. 2, at the Hayes Mansion in San Jose. In addition to taking in some great keynotes and technical sessions, I had the opportunity to meet with several companies to find out what’s new.

read the full article here.

Lam’s Coventor Buy Boosts MEMS Manufacturing

By R. Colin Johnson

SAN JOSE, Calif.—Why did Lam Research, a semiconductor fab equipment supplier, acquire Coventor, a software house hawking software to design microelectromechanical system (MEMS) chips and sub-10 nanometer semiconductors such as 3D finFETs?

Analysts fully expected for Coventor to be absorbed by Lam Research, only to surface as a Lam software offering. But at SEMI’s MEMS & Sensor Executive Congress 2017 (MSEC) here the companies reported that they are staying in separate headquarters, depending more the synergy of co-designing hardware for software and visa versa to give them a competitive edge over the competition.

read the full article here.

MEMS Market Shifting

By Ed Sperling

The MEMS sector is beginning to look more promising, bolstered by new end-market demand and different packaging options that require more advanced engineering, processes and new materials. All of this points to higher selling prices, which are long overdue in this space.

For years, the market for microelectromechanical systems was populated by too many companies vying for too few opportunities. Some devices became commoditized to the point where costs failed to keep up with selling price reductions. Even in the more specialized and higher-margin fringes of this segment, such as MEMS-based microphones and speakers, market sizes were too small to support more than a handful of smaller companies.

read the full article here.

Reducing BEOL Parasitic Capacitance using Air Gaps

By: Michael Hargrove, SP&I Engineer

Reducing back-end-of-line (BEOL) interconnect parasitic capacitance remains a focus for advanced technology node development. Porous low-k dielectric materials have been used to achieve reduced capacitance, however, these materials remain fragile and prone to reliability concerns. More recently, air gap has been successfully incorporated into 14nm technology [1], and numerous schemes have been proposed to create the air gap [2-3].  There are many challenges to integrate air gap in BEOL such as process margin for un-landed vias and overall increased process complexity. In this paper, we introduce virtual fabrication (SEMulator3D®) as a means to study air gap process integration optimization and resulting interconnect capacitance reduction. Initial calibration to published air gap data is demonstrated. read more…

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Using Advanced Statistical Analysis to improve FinFET transistor performance

By: Jimmy Gu, SP&I Staff Engineer

Trial and error wafer fabrication is commonly used to study the effect of process changes in the development of FinFET and other advanced semiconductor technologies.  Due to the interaction of upstream unit process parameters (such as deposition conformality, etch anisotropy, selectivity) during actual fabrication, variations based upon process changes can be highly complex. Process simulators that mimic fab unit processes can now be used to model these complex interactions.  They can also help process engineers identify important process and/or design parameters that drive certain critical targets such as CDs, yield limiting spacing, 3D design rule violations, resistance/capacitance, and other process and design issues.   The number of possible parameters that affect device performance and yield can be quite large, so statistical analysis can provide useful insight and help identify critical performance parameters.  Coventor’s SEMulator3D virtual fabrication (or process simulation) platform contains an analytics module for conducting virtual design-of-experiments and statistical analysis. I would like to use an example of a 14nm FinFET process flow in SEMulator3D to identify important process parameters that drive fin top CD, which is a key metric for transistor performance.

read more…

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Lam Research Acquires Simulation and Modeling Solutions Firm Coventor

Lam Research completes acquisition of Coventor

EuroTrade – September 6, 2017

Lam Research, a supplier of wafer fabrication equipment and services to the semiconductor industry, has completed the acquisition of Coventor, a provider of simulation and modeling solutions for semiconductor process technology, micro-electromechanical systems (MEMS), and the Internet of Things (IoT).

Lam said the acquisition supports its advanced process control vision and is expected to accelerate process integration simulation to increase the value of virtual processing, further enabling chipmakers to address some of their most significant technical challenges. read more…