Thursday, November 25, 2021

Watch again - Material development for MRAM and FRAM stacks at Fraunhofer IPMS-CNT

Material development for MRAM and FRAM stacks

Dr. Lukas Gerlich & Konrad Seidel (Fraunhofer IPMS - Center Nanoelectronic Technologies)

Today, data is the lifeblood disrupting many industries. The vast majority of this data is stored in the form of non-volatile magnetic bits in hard disk drives. This technology was developed more than half a century ago and has reached fundamental scaling limits that prevent further increases in storage capacity. New approaches are needed.

In the webinar, FRAM (Ferroelectric Random Access Memory) and MRAM (Magnetoresistive Random Access Memory) will be presented as two promising concepts for future ultra-low power memory technologies. Special attention will be paid to material development and fabrication on state-of-the-art industrial equipment for 300 mm wafers.

Previous Webinar: Fe- FET - A Memory Device for Maximum Integration, Konrad Seidel (IoT Components and Systems) Webinars - Fraunhofer IPMS

Tuesday, November 23, 2021

Picosun Group has launched an ALD Medical Materials Library

Picosun Group has launched a Medical Materials Library consisting of over ten materials intended for medical-related coating and encapsulation with ALD.

"Picosun’s Medical Materials Library targeted to the medical device manufacturer segment reflects the innovative spirit of the company. I’m really excited over the fact that we are able to flexibly design tailored encapsulations according to our customers’ needs. I’m especially proud of our medical customers and partners who are already in pre-clinical and clinical trials with their ALD coated devices”, says Juhani Taskinen, Vice President, Medical Business Area of Picosun Group.

The materials library is a reflection of over six years extensive research and development that shows ALD can render biocompatibility to a substrate coated with Picosun library materials. Biocompatibility tests were carried out according to ISO standards in accredited third-party laboratories. The performed tests included for example cytotoxicity, antimicrobial activity, skin irritation or sensitization, hemocompatibility, bacterial endotoxins, bioburden and sterilization residuals. From the tested materials Picosun is able to design tens of different types of end materials according to customer needs.

ALD technology provides dimensionless coating thus enabling miniaturization of components and devices in the field of electronic implants. Antibacterial function together with excellent barrier properties and outstanding corrosion resistance pave the way for using the materials both in electronic and orthopedic implants and show high potential in pharmaceutical packaging. The superior film uniformity and conformality ensure a pinhole-free coverage over even the smallest details of the device.

Friday, November 19, 2021

How Did Plasmas Change ALD? - w/ Erwin Kessels (ALD Stories Ep 8)

In Episode 8 of ALD Stories, Tyler chats with Eindhoven University of Technology professor, Erwin Kessels, about plasma-enhanced ALD, industry applications, and Erwin's Atomic Limits blog & teaching strategies. 

In this video: 
00:00 - Intro
  01:46 - PEALD Basics, Ions, & Applications 
20:56 - Semiconductor Industry Advantages 
28:05 - Photovoltaic Passivation 
36:43 - Atomic Limits Blog & Teaching 
45:25 - Outro 

Professor Erwin Kessels - 
Atomic Limits Blog -

Thursday, November 11, 2021

Call for abstracts - AVS 22nd International Conference on Atomic Layer Deposition (ALD 2022) in Ghent, Belgium


Call for Abstracts
Due February 3, 2022
The AVS 22nd International Conference on Atomic Layer Deposition (ALD 2022) featuring the 9th International Atomic Layer Etching Workshop (ALE 2022) will be a three-day meeting dedicated to the science and technology of atomic layer controlled deposition of thin films and now topics related to atomic layer etching. Since 2001, the ALD conference has been held alternately in the United States, Europe and Asia, allowing fruitful exchange of ideas, know-how and practices between scientists. This year, the ALD conference will again incorporate the Atomic Layer Etching 2022 Workshop (ALE 2022), so that attendees can interact freely. The conference will take place Sunday, June 26-Wednesday, June 29, 2022, at the International Convention Center (ICC) Ghent in Ghent, Belgium.

As in past conferences, the meeting will be preceded (Sunday, June 26) by one day of tutorials and a welcome reception. Sessions will take place (Monday-Wednesday, June 27-29) along with an industry tradeshow. All presentations will be audio-recorded and provided to attendees following the conference (posters will be included as PDFs). Anticipated attendance is 800+.
Key Deadlines:
Abstract Submission Deadline: February 3, 2022
Author Acceptance Notifications: March 16, 2022
Early Registration Deadline: May 15, 2022
Hotel Reservation Deadline: May 25, 2022
JVST Special Issue Deadline: November 1, 2022
ALD Program Chairs
Program Chair:
Christophe Detavernier
(Ghent University, Belgium)

Program Co-Chair:
Jolien Dendooven
(Ghent University, Belgium)

Program Co-Chair:
Paul Poodt
(TNO/Holst Center,
The Netherlands)
ALE Program Chairs

Program Chair:
Erwin Kessels
(Eindhoven University of Technology, The Netherlands)

Program Co-Chair:
Harm Knoops
(Oxford Instruments,
The Netherlands)

Program Co-Chair:
Jean-Francois de Marneffe
(imec, Belgium)

2021 November Networking - ALD at Aalto University

Date and time: Fri 26.11.2021 starting at 13 Event will be held at Aalto CHEM, Kemistintie 1, Espoo and online in Zoom at (password to be sent to registered participants via email a few days before the event)

Programme consists of (1) lectures (can be followed in Zoom): 
Brief introduction to ALD, Invited guest talks (Prof. Barry, Prof. van Ommen, Prof. Malygin), update of the Virtual Project on the History of ALD (VPHA); and (2) posters by local ALD research (not in Zoom) ("local" may be broadly interpreted).

Registration DL for participation with posters: Sun 14.11.2021. The number of posters may need to be limited; "first come, first serve".

Registration DL for local in-person participation: Mon 22.11.2021. The number of participants may need to be limited; "first come, first serve".

Registration DL for Zoom participation: Wed 24.11.2021. The number of participants might need to be limited (but likely not); if limiting is needed, "first come, first serve".

Organizing committee: Prof. Riikka Puurunen (chairperson), Dr. Aitor Arandia Gutierrez, Dr. Jorge Velasco, M.Sc. Jihong Yim. All from Aalto University, School of Chemical Engineering, Department of Chemical and Metallurgical Engineering, Catalysis research group.

AlixLabs, Breaking through the Crisis – Startups

While the world is dealing with the semiconductor shortage, startups are gearing up to fill in the gap with their innovative offerings to ensure that crisis doesn’t last long. In this interview, the co-founder and CEO of AlixLabs, Dr. Jonas Sundqvist discusses about what led us to this crisis, how to fix it and what role startups have in ensuring interrupted supply of silicon. He also discusses about what next when this crisis is fixed? Is there another crisis that may arise?

Tuesday, November 9, 2021

NCD Supplied new ALD equipment for protective coating of semiconductor equipment’s products

NCD supplied new ALD equipment to the customer based in Korea for coating products used in semiconductor equipment to protect from corrosion and plasma arcing. The customer could expect longer part lifetime and lower operation expense through this special coating because of improving reliability of process and protecting parts from damages.

Productivity and cost competitiveness have been more and more important in semiconductor industry. Using special coating, the competitiveness could be much increased by protecting particle generation and damage of semiconductor production, and cost down by longer maintenance period.

Normally protective coating on parts is used thermal spray coating, anodizing process and sputtering but they have some limitation because it is difficult to coat uniformly on complicated and micro-shaped products by those methods. However ALD process could solve that problem.

Complex shaped shower heads and electro static chucks in the equipment using etching and dry cleaning process with corrosive gases as well as plasma, could be expected to apply ALD process. Because shower heads have a lot of fine holes and ESCs have wafer lift pin holes so those products couldn’t be coated uniformly by CVD and PVD methods. Therefore ALD might be very essential for special coating for these products.

ALD Al2O3 coating to protect part damage is used normally because Al2O3 process has already been confirmed in many application area. ALD Y2O3 will be studied actively for the next protective coating because it has much more anticorrosive property than ALD Al2O3.

This supplied equipment, Lucida GSH500, applied NCD’s creative high throughput and large area ALD technology could load multi semiconductor products at the same time and run uniform ALD coating. NCD will keep our best to develop the more competitive ALD technology and equipment to expand various new application fields in the future.

<Lucida GSH500>

Innovative remote plasma source for atomic layer deposition for GaN devices

Oxford Instruments and TU Eindhoven present results from the new Atomfab(TM) Remote Plasma ALD system for high-quality dielectric films. This could enable GaN normally off high-electron-mobility transistors (HEMTs).

Innovative remote plasma source for atomic layer deposition for GaN devices
Journal of Vacuum Science & Technology A 39, 062403 (2021);

High-quality dielectric films could enable GaN normally off high-electron-mobility transistors (HEMTs). Plasma atomic layer deposition (ALD) is known to allow for controlled high-quality thin-film deposition, and in order to not exceed energy and flux levels leading to device damage, the plasma used should preferably be remote for many applications. This article outlines ion energy flux distribution functions and flux levels for a new remote plasma ALD system, Oxford Instruments Atomfab™, which includes an innovative, RF-driven, remote plasma source. The source design is optimized for ALD for GaN HEMTs for substrates up to 200 mm in diameter and allows for Al2O3 ALD cycles of less than 1 s. Modest ion energies of <50 eV and very low ion flux levels of <1013 cm−2 s−1 were found at low-damage conditions. The ion flux can be increased to the high 1014 cm−2 s−1 range if desired for other applications. Using low-damage conditions, fast ALD saturation behavior and good uniformity were demonstrated for Al2O3. For films of 20 nm thickness, a breakdown voltage value of 8.9 MV/cm was obtained and the Al2O3 films were demonstrated to be suitable for GaN HEMT devices where the combination with plasma pretreatment and postdeposition anneals resulted in the best device parameters.

Image of the Oxford Instruments Atomfab system (a) used in this work. A conceptual schematic (b) of the plasma source with powered (light gray) and grounded (dark gray) surfaces indicated. This plasma source was also put on a testbed system (c), which was used for the ion measurements and OES, the RFEA for probing the ion energy, and the flux was placed at the wafer level. Besides the RFEA, the testbed system was designed to allow for a range of optical diagnostics in the future (d).

Growth per cycle for ALD of Al2O3. Data are given as a function of precursor (a) and plasma (b) dose times and the respective purge times (c) and (d) at 300 °C. Single and double exponential curve fits serve as a guide to the eye.

ALD Webinar on Coatings for Electronic Implants

Tune into Picosun's webinar on Thursday 16th December 2021, 4PM CET, to discuss the benefits of ALD compared to the conventional coating methods used in electronical implants!

Digital healthcare has seen a tremendous development during past years with implantable electronics being part of ever-increasing number of treatment plans for patients. Consequently, need for advanced medical devices is rapidly expanding with ever tightening requirements as increasing number of complex therapeutic devices are implanted on the most sensitive areas of the body such as brain, spine, heart and eyes.

To ensure long lifetime and to reduce potential side effects in such environment, particular attention needs to be paid to the protective and biocompatible coating providing hermetic sealing, structural integrity and corrosion resistance to protect the device from the detrimental impact due to human body environment and to prevent the device releasing harmful substances to the surrounding tissue. The perfect protective coating therefore needs to be a biocompatible, pinhole-free barrier capable of uniformly coating devices with widely varying sizes and shapes to render them inert towards human body and vice versa, for decades after implantation.

Traditional thick film coating methods such as CVD, PVD or parylene tend to have limited utility on one or more of the requirements above. Atomic Layer Deposition (ALD) technology allows fabrication of ultra-thin, highly uniform and conformal material layers of exact thickness to atomic level and chemical composition on a variety of substrates, including highly temperature-sensitive organic materials. The technology was originally brought into large scale use by the semiconductor industry but has after that been applied to a variety of applications, including the latest MedTech innovations. Using ALD as the coating method for electronical implants improves patient safety as well as ensures longer lifetime and improved reliability for the implant.

Picosun’s ALD solutions have been in production for years at various medical industries including electronical implant protection. The coatings have been tested and proven to be non-cytotoxic, biocompatible, and to have antibacterial or bioactive function.

Join our webinar to learn more how ALD will revolutionize the MedTech industry, especially in the field of electronical implants, and create added value and competitive edge to your products. We will present the latest results on the superior hermeticity of our ALD encapsulants as a protective barrier against human tissue fluid. We have proven results on suppression of bacterial growth and ultra-low levels of bacterial endotoxins, surpassing even the strictest requirements of implant industries.

Key Learning Objectives
The benefits of ALD compared to the conventional coating methods used in electronical implants
Practical examples how Picosun’s biocompatible, hermetic ALD encapsulant coatings can improve the operational reliability, lifetime and safety of electronical implants

Sunday, October 31, 2021

UNIST has set a new efficiency record for a perovskite solar cell (PSC) at 25.8%

[UNIST] A research team, led by Professor Sang Il Seok in the School of Energy and Chemical Engineering at UNIST has set a new efficiency record for a perovskite solar cell (PSC) at 25.8% by forming an interlayer between electron-transporting and perovskite layers to minimize interfacial defects, contributing to the decrease in the power conversion efficiencies. The new record, according to the research team, is the world’s highest power conversion efficiency (PCE) reported so far. Besides, the record, certified by National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), is also the highest confirmed conversion efficiency of 25.5%.

In perovskite solar cells, the interfaces between the perovskite and charge-transporting layers contain high concentrations of defects, specifically deep-level defects, which substantially reduce the power conversion efficiency of the devices, noted the research team. Efforts have been made to reduce these interfacial defects have focused mainly on surface passivation. Yet, passivating the perovskite surface that interfaces with the electron-transporting layer has been difficult, because the surface-treatment agents on the electron-transporting layer may dissolve while coating the perovskite thin film.

“Alternatively, interfacial defects may not be a concern if a coherent interface could be formed between the electron-transporting and perovskite layers,” said the research team.

Continue reading: Perovskite Solar Cells with Atomically Coherent Interlayers on SnO2 ElectrodesUNIST News Center | UNIST News Center

The findings of this research have been published in the October 2021 issue of Nature. 

Journal Reference
Hanul Min, Do Yoon Lee, Junu Kim, et al., “Perovskite solar cells with atomically coherent interlayers on SnO2 electrodes,” Nature (2021). Perovskite solar cells with atomically coherent interlayers on SnO2 electrodes | Nature

Nanofabrication via Maskless Localized Atomic Layer Deposition of Patterned Nanoscale Metal Oxide Films

Here is a cool demonstration of direct write Spatial ALD or LOCALD like the researches at Laboratoire des Multimatériaux et Interfaces, University of Lyon is calling it.

Nanofabrication via Maskless Localized Atomic Layer Deposition of Patterned Nanoscale Metal Oxide Films
ACS Applied Nano Materials (IF5.097), Pub Date : 2021-10-18, DOI: 10.1021/acsanm.1c02550
Laabdia Midani, Waël Ben-Yahia, Vincent Salles, Catherine Marichy

A modified open-air spatial atomic layer deposition (SALD) head is employed to fabricate complex oxide patterns on various substrates. The co-reactant being kept in the surrounding atmosphere, a simple injection head that consists of three concentric nozzles with only one precursor outlet has been designed. Easy and reversible modification in the diameter of the metal precursor outlet permits direct patterning with different lateral sizes. Maskless deposition of uniform and homogenous TiO2 and ZrO2 thin films is successfully demonstrated with a lateral resolution tuned from millimeters to hundred micrometers range while keeping the film thickness in the range of a few to hundreds of nanometers with a control at the nanoscale. This localized SALD approach, named LOCALD, also enables layer stacking and deposition on structured substrates.

Supporting information: an1c02550_si_001.pdf

Friday, October 29, 2021

Green CVD: How Sustainable is Thin Film Deposition?

Professors Henrik Pedersen, Sean Barry, and Jonas Sundqvist join Tyler to discuss their recent publication in JVSTA about Green CVD. The trio talk about the conception of a new research field which concerns creating more sustainable thin film deposition practices without sacrificing film quality and offers some perspective on a number of areas and strategies addressed in the manuscript. 

Wednesday, October 27, 2021

Perovskite Solar Cells by ALD with Georgi Popov Helsinki University


Georgi Popov, Helsingfors universitet, med presentationen "Perovskite Solar Cells by Atomic Layer Deposition (ALD)", del 2/8 i videoserien ”STV 100 år – fokus på energi” där unga forskare från olika högskolor och universitet i Finland presenteras sina forskningsprojekt inom ämnesområdet energi. Producent, regi och klipp: Johanna Stenback, All Things Content Fotograf och ljud: Anders Lönnfeldt 

Översättning: Andrea Reuter och Heidi Kråkström, All Things Content 

Svenska tekniska vetenskapsakademien i Finland, STV, firar sina första 100 år 2021. Redan vid akademiens sammankomst i mars 1922 berördes världsbehovet av energi. Temat är i nuläget aktuellt och många dagsaktuella problem kan lösas via smarta energilösningar. Vi har valt att energi är ett övergripande tema för vårt jubileumsår 2021 och också för vår videoserie. 

Hela serien med bakgrundsmaterial finns samlat på vår webbplats 

Doktoranden Gergi Popov har utvecklat flera experimentella metoder så att han kan använda tekniken atomavsättning, Atomic Layer Deposition (ALD), för att göra perovskita solceller. 

Denna nya typ av solceller består av tunna filmer och möter väl tillämpningar som kräver fysisk flexibilitet, genomskinlighet och avstämbara färger. Därtill är de billiga att producera av lättillgängliga material.

Tuesday, October 26, 2021

Benchtop ALD system AT410 from Anric Technologies offered by SPS

SPS offers various ALD systems, including a table top version for surface controlled layer-by-layer deposition with atomic layer accuracy. We are talking about the AT410! This system provides a solution to conformal, conductive thin films for 3D sample prep, as well as traditional 2D coatings that are currently grown using sputtering/evaporation. It not only pushes boundaries, but it’s also an effective replacement for your current sample preparation processes, all within a benchtop configuration!

Thursday, October 14, 2021

Picosun 200 and 300 mm Clustered ALD Batch tools setting a higher pace and pushing out more chips from the fabs

ESPOO, Finland, 14th of October 2021 – PICOSUN® Morpher has continued to demonstrate excellent batch process results in the latest acceptance runs the company has performed for its customers in the global semiconductor industry. Excellent uniformities (<1% 1sigma) and single-digit particle levels have been reached at a number of acceptance runs with different film materials such as Al2O3 and SiO2.

PICOSUN® Morpher was launched in 2019 for up to the 200 mm wafer markets. The tool’s strength is the adaptability to the changing needs of different business verticals, from corporate R&D to production and foundry manufacturing. It enables fully automatic and high throughput production of for example MEMS, sensors, LEDs, lasers, power electronics, optics and 5G components.

“The market showed great interest towards PICOSUN® Morpher after the launch and it has now become a leading product for the sub-300 mm production market. We have delivered PICOSUN® Morpher to a variety type of customers, the latest including world leading manufacturers that use the tool both for pilot and high-volume manufacturing of integrated circuits”, states Juhana Kostamo, VP, Industrial Business Area of Picosun Group.

Earlier this year Picosun Group informed about record-breaking batch film quality results with PICOSUN® Sprinter, the Picosun new generation tool for 300 mm wafer markets.

Picosun ALD move into HVM for Optoelectronics at ams OSRAM

ESPOO, Finland, 28th of July 2021 – Picosun Group delivers cutting-edge Atomic Layer Deposition (ALD) technology to ams OSRAM for volume manufacturing of optical semiconductor devices.

ams OSRAM has invested in a fully automated PICOSUN® Morpher production cluster, which can deposit multiple materials on a batch of wafers even during the same process run. The flexibility and process variety of the PICOSUN® Morpher system is a key advantage, which enables volume production as well as the testing of new processes for R&D of future products.

Picosun Group and ams OSRAM have collaborated in a public funded project FLINGO ( project) to develop new ALD materials and processes to improve the characteristics of LEDs, such as efficiency and durability. The collaboration between the parties will continue after the ALD system delivery with activities to further expand the use of ALD in optoelectronic semiconductor processing.

“We have been working with Picosun since 2010 and now with this investment we can bring our collaboration to the next level. We are very excited to have the PICOSUN™ Morpher F cluster platform installed in our cleanroom”, states Dr. Sebastian Taeger, at ams OSRAM.

“The optical semiconductor market is one focus area of Picosun today. It is a fast-growing market where we have a strong presence with our tailored solutions for compound semiconductor-based devices. We have had excellent collaboration with the ams OSRAM technical team during project FLINGO and during the system specification stage. The expertise from both companies has resulted in optimized ALD solutions to boost the performance of the customer’s products.”, continues Dr. Christoph Hossbach, General Manager of Picosun Europe GmbH.

Tuesday, October 12, 2021

AlixLabs Granted Patent in Taiwan - The Unmatched Leader of the Global Semiconductor Industry

TUE, OCT 12, 2021 21:01 CET -- AlixLabs AB today announced that the company has been granted a patent in Taiwan relating to Atomic Layer Etch Pitch Splitting (APS)

AlixLabs from Lund, Sweden, has developed a new, innovative method for manufacturing semiconductor components with a high degree of packing, eliminating several steps in the manufacturing process - Atomic Layer Etch Pitch Splitting (APS)*. The method makes the components cheaper and less resource-intensive to manufacture and can open up a new path for a more sustainable mass production of electronics. The method also makes it possible to manufacture tiny semiconductor components accurately and efficiently, which means that smaller production facilities in, for example, Europe will be able to manufacture the components with manageable investments. Today, basically all production of leading-edge semiconductors takes place in the USA and Asia, and mainly in Taiwan and South Korea.

The company is now pleased to announce the first granted patent in Tawan. Taiwan is one of the most important markets for leading-edge semiconductor manufacturing and hence crucial for AlixLabs to protect its innovative APS process by IP. The Taiwanese semiconductor industry, including IC manufacturing, design, and packing, forms a significant part of Taiwan's IT industry. Due to its strong capabilities in fab wafer manufacturing and a complete industry supply chain, Taiwan has distinguished itself from its competitors and dominate the global marketplace. Taiwan is the unmatched leader of the worldwide semiconductor industry, with Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (TSMC) alone accounting for more than 50% of the global market. In 2020, the sector accounted for US$115 billion in output. Recently, Terry Tsao (曹世綸), global chief marketing officer and Taiwan president of SEMI, said the country's semiconductor equipment spending is expected to continue to grow in 2022 and replace South Korea as the world's largest market next year.**

As previously announced (September 28, 2021), Almi Invest and private investors, including NHL professionals Michael, Alexander and William Nylander, are participating in the issue for a total of SEK 9 million (USD 1 million) investment in AlixLabs. The funds will be used for product development and validation of the APS technology.

In a statement from Dr. Dmitry Suyatin, CTO and co-founder of AlixLabs on the origin of the invention and R&D activities in Lund, he said "Our key technology is based on a surprising discovery that sidewalls act as a topographical mask in Atomic Layer Etch Processes. This technology has been proven for such different materials as Gallium Phosphide (GaP), Silicon (Si) and Tantalum Nitride (TaN) – all being critical materials to the semiconductor and optoelectronic industry. Besides already having secured a granted US patent, we are now delighted to announce that our Taiwan patent has also been granted and that we have more patent applications in the pipeline".

The Diploma to AlixLabs for the recently Granted Patent (TW I739812) in Taiwan issued by The Taiwan Intellectual Property Office (TIPO, 經濟部智慧財產局)

Dr. Mohammad Karimi, R&D and Operation Manager, added, "I am delighted that ALixLabs has been granted a 1 Million SEK project to verify the APS technology in the fabrication of FinFET and GAA-FET transistor architectures by Vinnova in June 2021".. Dr. Jonas Sundqvist, CEO and co-founder of AlixLabs, concluded that "The strategy as we advance is to successfully transfer the APS technology to 300 mm wafer processing in Dresden, Germany and making it readily available for process demonstration for the leading IDMs & Foundries. We don't only hope to cut cost in semiconductor manufacturing but also to reduce the energy and clean water demand and output of greenhouse gasses during chip manufacturing considerably. This is not by itself a Green Fab Technology. However, it takes one small step in the right direction."

* Atomic Layer Etch Pitch Splitting (APS). As previously reported (April 30, 2021), The US Patent Office has approved AlixLabs's patent application for nanofabrication by ALE Pitch Splitting (APS). The US Patent Office has issued a patent (US10930515) on February 23, 2021. The patent covers methods to split nanostructures in half by a single process step using Atomic Layer Etching (ALE). The method can have a significant impact on the semiconductor industry by enabling sustainable scaling of electronic components and shrink chip designs further in a cost-effective way. The method is complementary for single exposure Immersion and Extreme UV (EUV) Lithography and corresponding multiple patterning technologies like self-aligned double and quadruple patterning (SADP resp. SAQP) as well as multiple exposure lithography-etch and directed self-assembly (DSA).
** Wikipedia
*** September 15, 2021-Hsinchu News, SEMI (International Semiconductor Industry Association) Industry Association)

Jonas Sundqvist, CEO of AlixLabs, phone +46 767 63 94 67, email

AlixLabs ( is an innovative startup founded in 2019 in Lund, Sweden, enabling the semiconductor industry to scale down Logic and Memory components in a cost-effective manner by the use of ALE Pitch Splitting (APS).

Friday, October 8, 2021

Forge Nano Installs Prometheus™ Powder Atomic Layer Deposition (PALD) equipment at Air Liquide's Tokyo Innovation Campus

Forge Nano, a global leader in surface engineering with atomic layer deposition (ALD) sells the top-of-the-line Prometheus™ development system. Air Liquide is using the system to validate applications for ALD-enabled powders in Japan and Globally.

DENVER and YOKOSUKA, Japan, Oct. 1, 2021 /PRNewswire/ -- Forge Nano, a Denver-based advanced materials equipment company, has installed one of their flagship Prometheus™ powder ALD (PALD) systems at Air Liquide Japan Ltd.'s Tokyo Innovation Campus. The Prometheus™ research and development system is being used by Air Liquide to validate ALD precursor chemicals for PALD applications for a variety of applications including battery materials for electric vehicles and electronic materials for consumer devices. Air Liquide, an investor in Forge Nano, is using the Prometheus™ system to perform various proofs-of-concept for subsequent scale-up at customer facilities using Forge Nano's commercial scale equipment.

Forge Nano Prometheus ALD Tool. Atomic Layer Deposition Equipment

"Forge Nano values Air Liquide as a key strategic investor and partner in various established markets. We're excited to provide them with a research system to accelerate adoption of PALD technology in Japan and globally for new applications. Once proofs of concept are completed by Air Liquide, we will provide end customers with commercial scale PALD equipment," Dr. Daniel Higgs, Director Product Management.

"Forge Nano is a recognized leader in the development and industrialization of cutting-edge powder-ALD processes. As the global leading ALD precursors "designer" and supplier, we are excited to install a Prometheus PALD system to support our discovery and scale-up of new ALD applications, together with our worldwide customers and partners," Nicolas Blasco, Air Liquide Advanced Materials, Global Director, Emerging Markets.

Prometheus™ PALD system:
The Prometheus™ PALD system is Forge Nano's flagship R&D system for ALD on powders. It incorporates over 20 years of powder ALD know-how and was designed for ease of use, research flexibility, and quality of coatings. With advanced powder fluidization technology and up to 8 ALD chemical precursor lines, Prometheus™ is the most capable powder ALD system on the market.

Prometheus features:
  • 1mL – 600ml (~1kg) of powder per batch.
  • Proprietary fluidization technology enables uniform fluidization and deposition
  • Up to 8 ALD chemical precursors connection enable a multitude of coatings
  • Interchangeable reactor bodies ensure precise coating of various batch sizes
  • Inert isolation and handling capabilities of air-sensitive powders
Forge Nano's team of ALD experts guide our customers through the entire process, making ALD feasible for nearly any industry. Forge's commercial systems for ALD on powders include Lithos™, Circe™, Morpheus™, while their systems for ALD on wafers/objects include Theia™, Apollo™, and Helios™.

About Forge Nano:
Based in Denver, CO., Forge Nano is a global leader in surface engineering and precision nano-coating technology, using Atomic Layer Deposition. Forge Nano's proprietary technology and manufacturing processes make angstrom-thick coatings fast, affordable and commercially viable for a wide range of materials, applications and industries. Forge Nano's suite of ALD and PALD products and services cover the full spectrum from lab-scale tools to commercial-scale manufacturing systems.
For more information visit

About Air Liquide Advanced Materials:
A world leader in gases, technologies and services for Industry and Health, Air Liquide is present in 78 countries with approximately 64,500 employees and serves more than 3.8 million customers and patients. Air Liquide Advanced Materials (ALAM) is transforming the science of electronics and technology. We innovate with atomic scale engineering to open up countless new possibilities in how the world lives, works and connects. Today, our ALOHA™ and Voltaix® products are critical to the manufacture of the newest computer chips required for Big Data and the Internet of Things.

Wednesday, October 6, 2021

Nanexa receives orders for ALD coating of sensors for detection of nuclear detonations

Nanexa AB ( recently announced that the company has received two orders for a substantial number of sensors for detection of radioactive isotopes of the noble gas xenon, from two American customers, totaling approximately SEK 1.7 million. 

”The order are a strong confirmation of our unique competence within Atomic Layer Deposition (ALD), the core technology in our drug delivery system PharmaShell®. Although it is outside the scope of our core business, we are happy to continue to support our customers in this area”, said David Westberg, CEO of Nanexa. 

The sensors are key components in equipment developed for detection of nuclear detonations, even if they are carried out deep underground. Delivery of the coated sensors is expected during the autumn of 2021. The American customers consist of a leader in engineering and manufacturing of advanced technical systems for, among others, the defense and space industries, and a government laboratory.

Dutch deep tech start-up Delft IMP secures €10 million series A funding to scale up technology that radically extends battery life

Sandwater, a Nordic venture capitalist and Invest-NL have agreed to a €10 million investment in Delft IMP. This allows Delft IMP to accelerate their nanocoating process to industrial scale enabling more durable batteries and other sustainable applications. The investors in this Series A are Sandwater and Invest-NL. Sandwater has a broad portfolio of investments aiming to enable progress together with its founders. Invest-NL is the government owned impact investor supporting innovation and sustainability in the Netherlands. 

Delft IMP has unique expertise in developing ultra-thin coatings on powders and has the proprietary technology to produce these materials at scale. The ultra-thin nanocoatings protect, for example battery powder from the harsh surroundings and thus enhances the life time of the battery. The Delft IMP application technology enables them to control the process to optimize the film thickness and reduce the use of scarce raw materials. 

Ruud van Ommen

Founder & Professor in Chemical Engineering at TU Delft

Jacob Moulijn

Founder & Emeritus Professor in Catalysis Engineering at TU Delft

The real benefit of the Delft IMP technology comes from the elegant way they are able to scale up the atomic layer deposition (ALD) based coating process to industrial scale. This makes it possible to deliver this benefit cost effective to a wide range of battery applications, supporting the electrification of mobility. Coating the battery powders, provides the flexibility to encounter this benefit in current and also future generations. Delft IMP is not your next battery company, but instead they work together with leading battery companies to extend the lifetime of batteries and reduce the consumption of scarce minerals. This facilitates the sustainable use of raw materials, and will also bring radical performance improvements to other technologies such as electrolysers and fuel cells. 

“We are solving the big problems in the world, by going very small: We are applying ultra-thin coatings on powder material and enable production at scale with a unique technology originating from Delft University of Technology.” said Dr. Roderik Colen, CEO of Delft IMP. 

Torkel Engeness (Sandwater) “We at Sandwater are in the market for the radical solutions of tomorrow. Sandwater believes that active ownership enables progress and is looking forward to sharing the journey together with Invest NL and Delft IMP”.

Tuesday, October 5, 2021

Post Doc position in ALE and Steven M. George Lab, Boulder Colorado

Department of Chemistry, University of Colorado, Boulder, CO 80309 

We seek a highly-motivated individual for a postdoctoral position, available immediately, to join the laboratory of Prof. Steven George in the Department of Chemistry, at the University of Colorado in Boulder, CO. The successful candidate will conduct experiments on a quadrupole mass spectrometry molecular beam system designed for exploring reaction pathways in thermal atomic layer etching (ALE). 

A link to a recent publication showing research from this system can be found at the bottom of this posting. The successful candidate will operate as part of team, collaborating with researchers on other ALE experiments and with theoretical chemists. Additionally, the successful candidate should have experience with vacuum hardware, a strong track record of research, and capable interpersonal skills. A Ph.D. in chemistry or a related field (materials science, engineering, or physics) is required. 

Jonathan Partridge and Ann Lii-Rosales exchanging substrates on a quadrupole mass spectrometry molecular beam ALE system.

At the foot of the Rocky Mountains, Boulder, CO is known for its scenic beauty, high quality of life, and active lifestyles. 

For more information about the George Research Group please see:

Please send a cover letter, CV and the names of two references to Prof. Steven George at

Call for Abstracts - 6th Area Selective Deposition Workshop (ASD 2022)

Call for Abstracts, Due February 7, 2022

An effort to help facilitate the progression of ASD techniques, the 6th Area Selective Deposition Workshop (ASD 2022) scheduled for April 21-22, 2022, in San Francisco will act as a central event for sharing and discussing the newest developments in ASD by gathering leading experts from both academia and industry. Attendees can expect to participate in talks regarding fundamental challenges related to recent developments in ASD, applications for ASD in next-generation technology, emergent processes for implementing ASD techniques, and new perspectives on metrological and characterization strategies for further understanding persistent mechanistic challenges. Based on the success of the previous workshops, ASD 2022 will consist of two days of presentations by invited and contributing speakers, as well as a banquet reception and poster session.


This event is centered on showcasing developments across the whole spectrum of area-selective deposition. Thus, the Workshop will cover a wide range of topics including the following:

· Near Term Technology Readiness (Scalable and Relevant ASD Processes for Use in Manufacturing)
· Fundamentals of ASD (Defects, Growth Mechanisms and Inhibitor Chemistries)
· Metrology Techniques for ASD
· Emerging/Exploratory ASD Processes and Applications (e.g., Catalysis, Energy Generation and Storage)

Key Deadlines:

Call for Abstracts Deadline: February 7, 2022
Author Acceptance Notifications: February 21, 2022
Hotel Reservation Deadline: March 4, 2022
Early Registration Deadline: March 4, 2022

Program Chair:

Rudy J. Wojtecki
IBM Almaden Research Center, USA
Questions? Contact

The dynamics in CVD and PEALD of InN

Epitaxial nanometer-thin indium nitride (InN) films are considered promising active layers in various device applications but remain challenging to deposit. Pedersen's group at Linköping University, Sweden, has compared the morphological evolution and characterizations of InN films with various growth conditions in CVD by both a plasma ALD approach and a conventional metalorganic CVD approach. 

Their results show that a time-resolved precursor supply is highly beneficial for deposition of smooth and continuous InN nanometer-thin films. The time for purging the reactor between the precursor pulses and low deposition temperature are key factors to achieve homogeneous InN. The gas exchange dynamics of the reactor is further studied using computational fluid dynamics. 

Top-view SEM images of InN grown on SiC by using both ALD and continuous CVD at different deposition temperatures: (a) 320, (b) 400, and (c) 450 °C. In each figure, the result from ALD is shown in the upper right part while the result from continuous CVD is shown in the bottom left part. (Journal of Applied Physics 130, 135302 (2021);

A Picosun R-200 ALD system was employed to grow InN films using trimethyl indium, In(CH3)3 (TMI), and plasma discharged NH3/Ar gas mixture and an Aixtron/Epigress horizontal hot-wall MOCVD reactor was used to grow InN for comparison.

X-ray diffractograms of (a) symmetric 2θ-ω scan of InN films deposited on 4H-SiC (0001) by ALD and continuous CVD. The process temperatures of ALD are indicated, respectively, in the plot. The curves are plotted in the log scale and are shifted vertically for visual clarity. (b) ω scan of InN (0002) and SiC (0004) of samples deposited at different temperatures.

According to their study, 320 °C is found to be the upper temperature where the dynamics of the deposition chemistry can be controlled to involve only surface reactions with surface species. The results highlight the promising role of the ALD technique in realizing electronic devices based on nanometer-thin InN layers.

This study and previous findings in the literature demonstrate the importance of using a time-resolved precursor supply in CVD of InN in which the purge time plays an important role. It should also be noted that the best results in this study are outside the window where the deposition per ALD cycle is constant in temperature. Such observation suggests that a true, self-limiting ALD behavior is not the most critical factor but rather the dynamic precursor supply. Meanwhile, the experimentally optimal purge time and precursor pulse time should vary from reactor to reactor based on their geometry and volume.

Reference: On the dynamics in chemical vapor deposition of InN, Journal of Applied Physics 130, 135302 (2021);

Sunday, October 3, 2021

Call for Research ArticlesSpecial Topic Collections:Atomic Layer Deposition and Atomic Layer Etching

Call for Research Articles
Special Topic Collections:
Atomic Layer Deposition and Atomic Layer Etching
Manuscript Deadline: November 15, 2021

The Journal of Vacuum Science and Technology A is soliciting research articles for publication in Special Topic Collections on Atomic Layer Deposition and Atomic Layer Etching. These special topic collections are planned in collaboration with the annual ALD meeting and ALE Workshop.

Each year, in concert with the annual Atomic Layer Deposition (ALD) meeting and Atomic Layer Etching (ALE) Workshop, the Journal of Vacuum Science and Technology A publishes collections of articles covering the most recent developments and experimental studies in ALD and ALE. These ALD and ALE Special Topic Collections will include papers presented at the annual meeting and Workshop, as well as other ALD and ALE research articles that were not presented at the conference but are submitted to the collections. The collections feature articles dedicated to the science and technology of atomic layer controlled deposition and etching.

Authors are encouraged to use the JVST article template. During submission, you will have an opportunity to tell us that your paper is a part of one of the Collections by choosing either the Special Topic or Conference Collection on “Atomic Layer Deposition (ALD)” or “Atomic Layer Etching (ALE).” See recent collections: ALD 2021, ALE 2021, ALD 2020, and ALE 2020.

Saturday, October 2, 2021

ASM International Investor Day take away - the leader in ALD wafer processing equipment for the booming semiconductor industry

 ASM International, the leader in ALD wafer processing equipment for the booming semiconductor industry recently hold its annual investor day.

Highlights included:
  • Targeting revenue of €2.8-€3.4 billion by 2025 (2020-2025 CAGR of 16%-21%), gross margins of 46%-50% in 2021-2025, and operating margins of 26%-31% in 2021-2025;
  • Targeting Net Zero emissions by 2035 and 100% renewable electricity by 2024;1
  • Single-wafer ALD market expected to increase from $1.5 billion in 2020 to $3.1-3.7 billion by 2025;
  • Further capacity expansion of our new manufacturing facility to be production ready by early 2023.

3D device architecture evolution is continuing into all leading-edge semiconductor components. 3DNAND and FinFET are to be followed by GAA FETs and 3D-DRAM. Together with the need for new materials drives the demand for CVD and ALD processing equipment (ASM Investor Day 2021)

“I’m very excited to share the strong prospects for our company during our first Investor Day,” said Benjamin Loh, CEO of ASM International. “We project revenue to increase to €2.8–€3.4 billion by 2025, with operating margins of 26%-31% during the 2021-2025 period. Key inflections in next generation semiconductor devices such as complex 3D architectures and new materials, are expected to drive double digit growth in ASM’s key markets. Today we will also highlight new innovations in our products, enabling our customers’ technology roadmaps. Capitalizing on our innovative strength, early customer engagements and product differentiation, we are focused on maintaining our leading position in the ALD market and to further increase our market share in Epi.

The semiconductor market, historical and as forecasted by VLSI Research. By 2030 it will have doubled to USD 1 Trillion. (VLSI Research - ASM Investor Day 2021)

In view of the strong growth opportunities ahead of us we will further step up our R&D investments and strengthen our capabilities. In addition, with our new expanded manufacturing facility in Singapore completed just less than one year ago, we have now decided to prepare a further substantial capacity increase within this facility to be production ready by early 2023.

The Wafer Equipment market growth has reached a new level and will sustain it for years to come (VLSI Research - ASM Investor Day 2021).

ASM controls more than 50% of the single wafer ALD equipment market and intends to defend the market share going forward to 2025. The market is forecasted by ASM to more than double 2020 to 2025, reaching USD 3.1 to 3.7 billion by then. (ASM Investor Day 2021)

A further increase in our ambition to sustainability is a central element in our strategy. As an important next step we announce today our ambitious target to achieve Net Zero emissions by 2035 (scope 1, 2 and 3) and 100% renewable electricity by 2024. As we continue to drive growth through innovation, ASM is well positioned to create long-term value for all its stakeholders.”

ASM Roadmap for DRAM, 3D-NAND and Logic,  aligned with its leading-edge customer base. (ASM Investor Day 2021)

The Investor Day was held at 2:00 pm CET  and Q&A can also be followed through a live webcast after registering at:



ASM also announced that Q3 order intake is expected to be above €600 million, compared to previous guidance of €510-530 million, mainly driven by continued strong demand in the logic/foundry sector. Q3 net sales are expected to be in line with previous guidance €400-430 million.

Swedish Semiconductor Startup AlixLabs Raises USD 1 Million Seed Capital

TUE, SEP 28, 2021 00:01 CET, Almi Invest is investing close to SEK 3 million in AlixLabs, which is developing a new method for manufacturing semiconductor components cheaper and faster. Private investors, including NHL professionals Michael, Alexander and William Nylander, are also participating in the issue for a total of SEK 9 million (USD 1 million). The funds will be used for product development and validation of the APS-technology.

Semiconductor components build up the computer chips found in virtually all electronic products, such as smartphones, servers, game consoles, computers and cars. They can be described as the brain and memory that make electronic products work.Today's semiconductor components are extremely small, making them more difficult and expensive to manufacture. The industry is working to cope with this challenge through new and innovative approaches. Common to these new methods is that they are complex and in most cases extremely expensive.

Now AlixLabs from Lund, Sweden, has developed a new, innovative method for manufacturing semiconductor components with a high degree of packing, which eliminates several steps in the manufacturing process - Atomic Layer Etch Pitchsplitting (APS)*. The method makes the components cheaper and less resource-intensive to manufacture and can open up a new path for a more sustainable mass production of electronics. The method also makes it possible to manufacture extremely small semiconductor components in an accurate and efficient way, which means that also smaller production facilities in, for example, Europe will be able to manufacture the components with manageable investments. Today, basically all production of leading edge semiconductors takes place in the USA and Asia, mainly in Taiwan and South Korea.

Dr. Jonas Sundqvist, CEO of AlixLabs AB.

- AlixLab's disruptive manufacturing method has enormous market potential and enables continued technology development and more powerful electronics that are at the same time much more resource-efficient, says Anna Gisselsson, Investment Manager at Almi Invest.The company's method is covered by an approved patent in the United States* and it has additional patent applications in other countries.

- Thanks to this investment, we can take the company to the next level, says Dr. Jonas Sundqvist, CEO of AlixLabs. Today, we have a number of ongoing negotiations with R&D actors, equipment and semiconductor manufacturers to create a basis for further cooperation for the development of our products. In the longer term, we want to create an ecosystem covering the complete value chain for APS and we hope to have a strong base in Europe with a global reach.

.- The R&D from these funds will allow us to strenghten and expand our IP portfolio for our properitary APS-technology, says Dr. Dmitry Suyatin, CTO of AlixLabs.

From left to right, Dr. Dmitry Suyatin, CEO, Dr. Mohammad Karimi R&D and Operations Manager, and Dr. Jonas Sundqvist, CEO.

AlixLabs Board of directors:

* Atomic Layer Etch Pitch Splitting (APS). As previously reported (April 30th, 2021) The US Patent Office has approved AlixLabs’s patent application for nanofabrication by ALE Pitch Splitting (APS). The US Patent Office has issued a patent (US10930515) on February 23, 2021. The patent covers methods to split nanostructures in half by a single process step using Atomic Layer Etching (ALE). The method has the potential to have a big impact on the semiconductor industry by enabling sustainable scaling of electronic components and shrink chip designs further in a cost-effective way. The method is complementary for single exposure Immersion and Extreme UV (EUV) Lithography and corresponding multiple patterning technologies like self-aligned double and quadruple patterning (SADP resp. SAQP) as well as multiple exposure lithography-etch and directed self-assembly (DSA).

Jonas Sundqvist, CEO of AlixLabs, phone +46 767 63 94 67, email

AlixLabs ( is an innovative startup founded in 2019 in Lund, Sweden, enabling the semiconductor industry to scale down Logic and Memory components in a cost-effective manner by the use of ALE Pitch Splitting (APS).