Thursday, September 14, 2017

ALD Nano today announced Wayne Simmons as CEO

ALD Nano today announced that its Board of Directors has appointed Wayne Simmons as Chief Executive Officer effective September 2017. Dr. Simmons was also elected to the Board of Directors. He will replace Founding CEO, Mike Masterson, who will assume the role of Executive Chairman with an added advisory role for key markets and will continue to serve as Chairman of ALD Nano's Board. The company has also announced that Joe Spencer was elevated to Vice President of Engineering and that its employee base continues to expand with new hires in areas including engineering, science and business development.
“This is the right time for Wayne Simmons to become ALD Nano's next CEO. We've selected a successful leader at a time when ALD Nano’s global leadership in ALD on particles is growing in existing and new markets ,” said ALD Nano Chairman Mike Masterson. “I joined ALD Nano because I wanted to be a part of a company that is solving important challenges for advanced materials that are transforming industries," said Wayne Simmons. “This company has built over a decade of ALD expertise with all of its business and scientific founders still active. Together, additional expertise has been added over the years that creates a wealth of institutional ALD knowledge to deploy into commercial markets."
Full story and Source: ALD Nanosulution Newsletter LINK
About ALD Nano: Principally located in Broomfield CO, ALD NanoSolutions was spun out in 2001 from premier atomic layer deposition (ALD) laboratories at the University of Colorado to industrialize ALD applications. We use our patented Particle ALD TM technology to improve a number of products including battery and lighting materials. Through our efforts, we have engineered new processes and tools that we support and sell from lab to production scale. We are also integrating our Polymer ALD TM technology into an advanced manufacturing system to bring low cost barriers to the packaging industry. Our principle objective is to leverage our expertise to help our customers develop successful commercial products. We are a dynamic and flexible company with a long history of successful relationships with clients ranging from venture-backed startups to Fortune 50 corporations.

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

NCD supplied Full Automation for Lucida GS Series to Tongwei Solar

NCD has recently supplied Full Automation System to Chinese Tongwei Solar for solar cell manufacturing ALD equipment. This is Full Automation System including pitch changer to supply wafers automatically to Lucida GS ALD Series which had already installed in the customer site for high quality Al2O3 thin film deposition. The connection of ALD and Full Automation System to handle wafers automatically will make faster and more convenient ALD process.

In the future, the sales of Full Automation System along with ALD equipment will be increasing because most customers will need more productivity and more efficiency of work. 
Lucida™ GS Series + Automation

RWTH / Oxford Instruments Workshop on dry processing for Nanoelectronics and Micromechanics

Here is an excellent workshop at RWTH Aachen that I visited once organized by Oxford Instruments. Now this is a full 2 day event with a lot of interesting talks and tutorials on plasma processing including ALD offcourse.

Workshop on dry processing for Nanoelectronics and Micromechanics: deposition and etching 

by Oxford Instruments Plasma Technology and RWTH Aachen


Friday, September 8, 2017

ALD Enabled Battery Materials, Methods and Products IP Roll-up by Forge Nano

Forge Nano is pleased to announce the completion of its Intellectual Property roll-up initiative for Atomic Layer Deposition (ALD) enabled battery materials, methods of manufacturing, and products.

Through a series of patent filings, acquisitions, and licenses, Forge Nano is pleased to offer its customers and partners a comprehensive IP portfolio to incorporate the benefits of ALD surface modification coatings into battery products for enhanced safety, lifetime and end-use performance. Forge Nano is currently accepting licensing offers for this portfolio, with the anticipation of closing on a first round of field-limited agreements by the end of 2017. 

The cornerstone of Forge Nano’s ALD-enabled battery materials IP protects lithium-containing cathode and anode materials with coatings of up to two nanometers in thickness (US 9,570,734):

Claim 1: An electrode comprising a plurality of particles having a diameter of maximally 60 μm, wherein the particles are coated with a protective layer having a uniform thickness of about 2 nm or less, wherein the protective layer of the particles is obtained by atomic layer deposition, and wherein the particles are lithium-containing particles.

Friday, September 1, 2017

Sentech supports the German FMD initiative in Adlershof Berlin with Etch and ALD technology

With the handover of the grant approvals to Fraunhofer and Leibniz, the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) launched on April 6, 2017 the first research fab operating throughout Germany.
Most of the planned funds have been desicated for the semiconductor cluster Silicon Saxony in the State of Saxony (101 M EUR) and around Berlin (117 M EUR), see below. The former East Germany is where most high volume semiconductor prodcution (Infineon, Globalfoundries, XFab) and leading edge research and development takes place in Germany.  Just recently Bosch Sensortech also announced they are heading to Dresden in Saxony fwhen they take the step to MEMS production on 300 mm wafers. However, considerable founds are to be invested across Germany in a typical German decentralized Federal way.

Now researchers and companies in Adlershof outside Berlin are pushing forward joint development in microelectronics. Above all, the Ferdinand-Braun Institute, Leibniz Institute for High-Frequency Technology, conducting application-oriented research. As part of the recently launched "Forschungsfabrik Mikroelektronik Deutschland (FMD)", the institute is enganging additional experts for furture technologies at the Wista site.

Dr. Irina Kärkkänen and her fellow Sentech plasma application engineers and the Sentech President Albrecht Krüger at the nearby Sentech applications lab. 

"The FMD is a unique chance for the German and European semiconductor and electronics industries to strengthen it internationally", says Prof. Günther Tränkle, Director of the Ferdinand Braun Institute, Leibniz Institute for High Frequency Technology (FBH). "German research is already very strong in this area, but a common structure has been missing." Now this is changing: Together with 12 other research institutes and a total of more than 2,000 scientific staff, the Adlershofer Institute is one of the world's largest pools for technologies around Smart Systems. The Federal Ministry of Education and Research is supporting the FMD with around 350 million euros, of which 117.2 million euros will flow to Berlin and Brandenburg, whereby the two Leibniz and Fraunhofer institutes will modernize and complement their technological infrastructure.

The equipment from Sentech for the FMD consists of three modules, two of which are reactive ion etching cambers, that are used to etch very fine structures in wafer based production. In addition, the system can be used to deposit thin three-dimensional layers on by atomic layer deposition. A technique that the FBH could not access previously. "Microoptics and optoelectronics are an important future field," says Krüger, "so the FMD is of great importance for the companies and institutes in Adlershof." Krüger is convinced that: "From here, important impulses for the technology will emerge."

Original full article in German : LINK
More inforamtion on FMD : LINK

SPTS etch deposition and thermal equipment for semiconductor industry

You learn something everyday - here is an interesting blog on MEMS wafer level packaging are silicon capping and thin film encapsulation, each providing benefits for specific packaging applications by SPTS.

SPTS etch deposition and thermal equipment for semiconductor industry: SPTS etch deposition and thermal equipment for semiconductor industry.

Schematic illustration of capping wafer bonded to MEMS wafer (Picture SPTS)

A computational study of hafnia-based ferroelectric memories

The discovery of ferroelectric properties of binary oxides more than 10 years ago by researchers in Dresden, Germany has boosted the interest in ferroelectrics and bridged the scaling gap between the state-of-the-art semiconductor technology and ferroelectric memories. NaMLab, a subsidy to TU Dresden and a startup company FCM, have devoted substantial resources in understanding the hafnia based ferrolectric materials in detail and here is one of their latest publication seeking to find a correlation between the performance of the memory device and underlying physical mechanisms. 

A computational study of hafnia-based ferroelectric memories: from ab initio via physical modeling to circuit models of ferroelectric device

Milan Pešić, Christopher Künneth, Michael Hoffmann, Halid Mulaosmanovic, Stefan Müller, Evelyn T. Breyer, Uwe Schroeder, Alfred Kersch, Thomas Mikolajick, Stefan Slesazeck

S.I.: Computational Electronics of Emerging Memory Elements (LINK)

In a TiN/FE:HfO2/TiN based ferroelectric cell, charge trapping influences the electric field here the polarization response and corresponding domain pinning due to the charge trapping of a woken-up (left) and a fatigued stack (right) is shown. (Picture: NaMLab gGmbH SlideShare LINK). 

From a memory materials, process and precursor point of view it is interesting to follow the high-k material development starting with hafnia based DRAM at 90 nm in 2004 then moving to zirconia based below 65 nm and remaining strong since then and now there is an obvious opportunity for hafnia to come make a comeback in the future as a ferroelectric non-volatile memory technology. 

Recently I entertained myself by mapping the high-k IP that has been field segmented according to their elements. Here it is striking to see that there is almost no filing in the old school strontium, barium and PZT based ferroelectrics or "super high-k´s" nowadays as compares to in the nineties (see below, as presented at the CMC Conference 2017 in Dallas, USA).

Obviously hafnia also is heavily researcher due to its use as a gate dielectric in CMOS Logic and many high-k´s are also interesting in other types of memory cells like RRAM.