Showing posts with label environment. Show all posts
Showing posts with label environment. Show all posts

Sunday, September 18, 2022

Imec´s sustainable-semiconductor program is a success right away!

Imec´s sustainable-semiconductor program (LINK) seems to be a success right away:
  • Less than a year after its official launch, some of the leading consumer electronics and semiconductor manufacturing players have signed up as partners in imec’s program for Sustainable Semiconductor Technologies and Systems (SSTS).
  • Apple joined the program Apple joins Imec's new Sustainable Semiconductor research program | iMore
  • The program assesses the environmental impact of new technologies, identifies high-impact problems, and defines semiconductor manufacturing solutions with less environmental impact.
  • In this way, the program gathers the semiconductor value chain to jointly target net-zero emissions for chip manufacturing.
  • One good reason for success is most probably that Lars-Åke Ragnarsson from Sweden is the program director of sustainable semiconductor technologies and systems (SSTS) at imec.

More information:

Samsung to focus on treatment of gas used in chip production to achieve net-zero emissions

A major cause of greenhouse gas emissions is process gas used in semiconductor wafer manufacturing comes from processing equipment such as reactive ion etching (RIE) and deposition (CVD and ALD). You can read and watch an interview here and study that paper that was recently published by me and my professor friends Henrik Pedersen and Sean Barry:

Green CVD-Toward a sustainable philosophy for thin film deposition by chemical vapor deposition

It is almost obvious that higher VPs at Samsung and TSMC (LINK) did just that ;-)

[Korea Herald, Link below] Advancing abatement technologies to reduce carbon emissions is the top priority in the Samsung Electronics semiconductor unit's goal to become carbon neutral by 2050, a top official said Friday.

"Treatment of gas used to manufacture semiconductor chips is our biggest focus in our spending (to achieve net-zero emissions)," Song Doo-guen, executive vice president and head of the Environment & Safety Center at Samsung Electronics, told reporters at a briefing in Seoul.

According to the article, Song Doo-guen, executive vice president and head of the Environment & Safety Center at Samsung Electronics, speaks at a briefing in Seoul, Friday and announced that:
  • Samsung has pledged a 7 trillion won ($5 billion) investment to achieve its climate ambitions, and announced that it had recently joined RE100, a coalition comprising 380 global enterprises committed to becoming 100 percent renewable.
  • Alongside the plan to cut direct carbon emissions, Samsung has also laid out a raft of plans to reduce indirect emissions, mainly by pursuing ultralow-power chip products.
  • Other eco-conscious plans it has drawn up include capping the maximum use of freshwater to 300,000 tons a day by 2030 and eradicating gaseous and liquid pollutants by 2040 with treatment technology.
Source: Samsung chip plants look to stamp out carbon footprint (

Friday, July 23, 2021

Green CVD—Toward a sustainable philosophy for thin film deposition by chemical vapor deposition

Thin films of materials are critical components for most areas of sustainable technologies, making thin film techniques, such as chemical vapor deposition (CVD), instrumental for a sustainable future. It is, therefore, of great importance to critically consider the sustainability aspects of CVD processes themselves used to make thin films for sustainable technologies. Here, we point to several common practices in CVD that are not sustainable. From these, we offer a perspective on several principles for a sustainable, “Green CVD” philosophy, which we hope will spur research on how to make CVD more sustainable without affecting the properties of the deposited film. We hope that these principles can be developed by the research community over time and be used to establish research on how to make CVD more sustainable and that a Green CVD philosophy can develop new research directions for both precursor and reactor design to reduce the precursor and energy consumption in CVD processes.

Electrical energy consumption and greenhouse gas emission in 300 mm logic wafer production for relevant technology nodes in production in 2021 and to be ramped up in the next five years.

We foresee a new research field focused on developing more sustainable CVD processes without impacting the performance of the deposited film negatively. To develop this, we suggest an adaption of a philosophy similar to Green Chemistry,8 a philosophy for all areas of chemistry and chemical engineering to make more sustainable processes and products. Green chemistry focuses on reducing the amount of hazardous materials used and generated, the amount of energy consumed, and designing less harmful molecules. Here, we outline suggestions for such a Green CVD philosophy

A Green CVD philosophy needs to focus on reducing the total energy consumption, reducing molecular consumption by increasing the efficiency in atom usage, and reducing the use of and formation of hazardous molecules. This should be done for the whole process chain of a CVD process—from precursor synthesis to waste gas abatement. A sustainable CVD process must also take an active stand against human rights abuse throughout the whole materials chain, use renewable energy for CVD equipment, and make use of the excess heat produced by CVD equipment. 

Summary of a suggested Green CVD philosophy

From this breakdown of the CVD process, we suggest the following principles to summarize a sustainable Green CVD philosophy:
(1) Use precursors that can be supplied to the process in close to the stoichiometric ratios in the target film to reduce molecular waste.
(2) Use precursors that undergo reactions with lower activation energies to reduce energy consumption and molecular waste.
(3) Use less hazardous precursor molecules to make the CVD process safer.
(4) Use precursors that produce less harmful by-products that are easier to handle.
(5) Minimize waste and energy consumption in the precursor supply chain.
(6) Minimize the thermal budget and vacuum volume of the CVD reactors.
(7) Use the most energy-efficient way to activate the deposition chemistry, including plasma methods.
(8) Recycle unconsumed CVD gases and precursors.
(9) Identify, prevent, address, and account for human rights abuses in the CVD supply chain.
(10) Use renewable energy for the CVD process and harvest excess heat.

Finally, we appreciate that industry is reluctant to change precursors and CVD processes that have been successfully brought into high volume production. As we have already pointed out, the research area of Green CVD should strive to make a given CVD process more sustainable without causing negative effects on the performance of the deposited film. Ideally, Green CVD should not affect the price of the CVD processing step either. It is very reasonable to expect that the demands for more sustainable production will increase and with that a need for more sustainable CVD. As in other research, a strong collaboration between industry and academia will strengthen the Green CVD development effort.
Full article in JVSTA: 

Green CVD—Toward a sustainable philosophy for thin film deposition by chemical vapor deposition
Journal of Vacuum Science & Technology A 39, 051001, (2021);  Henrik Pedersen, Seán T. Barry, and Jonas Sundqvist


Tuesday, November 15, 2016

Special Issue: Atomic Layer Deposition for Energy and Environmental Applications

Here is a Special issue in Advanced Materials Interfaces: Atomic Layer Deposition for Energy and Environmental Applications LINK. The issue is guest edited by Neil P. Dasgupta, Liang Li, and Xueliang Sun.

The ALD Energy and Environment special issue has 11 invited research articles and 5 review articles  from leading ALD experts. The focus is on the following applications:
  • photo-voltaics
  • batteries
  • supercapacitors
  • photoelectrochemical cells
  • transparent electrodes
  • sensors
  • environmental barrier layers. 
The editors argue that ALD for Energy, judging by the number of publications the last 15 years (Web of Science database) is one of the faster growing application fields. Since we have a christian holiday tomorrow in Saxony I had some time to make a plot based on Google Scholar, which includes also patents. Yes you can see exactly the same growth trend. So folks ALD and Energy is coming and that is why you should check it out below (Embedded Twitter link to the journal).

Google Scholar year by year for "atomic layer deposition" AND energy. Obviously energy can also be used for binding energy etc. but I think the message is clear.