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MEMS & Sensors Industry Group Tackles Technical Challenges at Annual Technical Congress

By Sensors Staff

PITTSBURGH, PA — Microelectromechanical systems (MEMS) and sensors suppliers are targeting a rapidly growing global market for their devices, key components that increase the intelligence and interactivity of billions of electronic products. Despite this unprecedented growth, suppliers face shared technical challenges that limit expansion, including energy and power management, security, integration, and machine learning. MEMS & Sensors Industry Group’s (MSIG’s) 2017 MEMS & Sensors Technical Congress® (MSTC), to be held on May 10-11, 2017 on the campus of Stanford University, offers attendees a collaborative approach to resolving these shared technical challenges.

From smart homes and smartphones to wearables, robotics, drones, and connected cars, MEMS and sensors represent huge growth areas for suppliers. Yole Développement forecasts that the MEMS industry will reach $20B by 2021, which represents 8.9% compound annual growth rate (CAGR) from 2016-2021 for the value of MEMS markets.[i] The market for sensors is growing slightly faster. In a soon-to-be-released report, BCC Research estimates that the global market for sensors will reach nearly $240.3B in 2022, with a five-year CAGR of 11.8% from 2017-2022.[ii]

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Patterning Problems Pile Up

By Mark Lapedus

Chipmakers are ramping up 16nm/14nm finFET processes, with 10nm and 7nm now moving into early production. But at 10nm and beyond, chipmakers are running into a new set of problems.

While shrinking feature sizes of a device down to 10nm, 7nm, 5nm and perhaps beyond is possible using current and future fab equipment, there doesn’t seem to be a simple way to solve the edge placement error (EPE) issue.

EPE basically is the difference between the intended and the printed features of an IC layout. It involves patterning of tiny features in precise locations. For example, a feature could be a line, and that line has right and left edges. But in a device, the line and its edges must be precise and placed in exact locations. Then, a contact may land on that line in the device. If these are not precise and exact, that results in misalignment, or an EPE. And if one or more EPE issues crop up in the production flow, the device is subject to shorts or poor yields, which could cause the entire chip to fail.

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AIM Photonics Welcomes Coventor as Newest Member

 

 

 

 

For Immediate Release: March 16, 2017

Contact:
Laura Magee (ESD) | laura.magee@esd.ny.gov | (716) 846-8239 | (800) 260-7313
ESD Press Office | PressOffice@esd.ny.gov | (800) 260-7313
Steve Ference (AIM) | sference@sunypoly.edu | 518-956-7319

CUS-Backed Initiative Taps Process Modeling Specialist to Enable Manufacturing of High-Yield, High-Performance Integrated Photonic Designs

Today’s Announcement Builds On Progress Of Finger Lakes Forward, The Region’s Award-Winning Strategic Plan To Generate Robust Economic Growth And Community Development

ROCHESTER, NY and CARY, NCThe American Institute for Manufacturing Integrated Photonics (AIM Photonics), a public-private partnership advancing the nation’s photonics manufacturing capabilities, and Coventor®, Inc., a semiconductor process modeling software company, today announced Coventor as the newest member of AIM Photonics. Coventor will provide access to its unique, physics-driven 3D modeling technology to improve the performance and manufacturability of complex, integrated photonic designs. read more…

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Interviewing David Fried, Coventor CTO: EUV’s viability still in doubt even as rollout begins

By Mark LaPedus

Semiconductor Engineering sat down to discuss lithography and photomask technologies with Gregory McIntyre, director of the Advanced Patterning Department at Imec; Harry Levinson, senior fellow and senior director of technology research at GlobalFoundries; David Fried, chief technology officer at Coventor; Naoya Hayashi, research fellow at Dai Nippon Printing (DNP); and Aki Fujimura, chief executive of D2S. What follows are excerpts of that conversation.

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China: Fab Boom Or Bust?

By Mark LaPedus

China’s semiconductor industry continues to expand at a frenetic pace. At present there are nearly two dozen new fab projects in China.

Whether all these fab projects get off the ground is not entirely clear because the dynamics in China remain fluid. What is clear is the motivation behind this building frenzy—China is trying to reduce its huge trade imbalance in ICs. The country continues to import a large percentage of its chips from foreign vendors.

The Chinese government wants to produce more chips within China, and it also wants to keep closer tabs on those ICs for security reasons. As part of the plan, China has lured several multinational chipmakers to build new fabs inside its borders. For multinational chipmakers, the attraction is the ability to get closer to an enormous customer base. GlobalFoundries, Intel, Samsung, SK Hynix, TSMC and UMC all are building new fabs or expanding their existing plants in China.

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MEMS Microphones – A Bright Spot among Commoditized Consumer Sensors

By: Jun Yan, Ph.D., MEMS Technical Director

MEMS Microphone picture

Source: InfineonTechnologies, AG, “The Infineon Silicon MEMS Microphone”, DOI:10.5162/sensor2013/A4.3

MEMS microphones have emerged as a bright spot among consumer sensors, which in general are going through a rapid commoditization and profit-squeezing trend.

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And They’re Off…. Worldwide MEMS Design Contest Officially Starts

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Cadence, X-FAB, Coventor and Reutlingen University Select 10 Design Teams as Semi-Finalists

Cary, NC, March 15, 2017Cadence Design Systems, Coventor, X-FAB and Reutlingen University – joint sponsors of the worldwide MEMS Design Contest – today announced the commencement of the design phase of the contest with the selection of ten semi-finalist teams who will compete for the top prize. The contest was created to highlight and encourage the development of innovative MEMS and mixed-signal designs projects. Contest organizers carefully evaluated submissions from all over the world and selected the ten most innovative ideas to be further explored and developed during the design stage of the contest. Submissions ranged from teams of two to nine, addressing areas such as surgical robots, energy harvesting and automotive Heads Up Display (HUD) applications. read more…

MEMS: Improving Cost And Yield

By Ed Sperling

MEMS devices inspire awe on the design side. On the test and manufacturing side, they evoke a different kind of reaction.

These are, after all, the intersection of mechanical and electrical engineering—a joining of two miniature worlds that are the basis of some of the most complex technology on the planet. But getting these devices to yield sufficiently, understanding what does or does not work, and figuring out how to do this with the kind of economies of scale that have made semiconductors affordable present some monumental challenges in the MEMS world.

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