You are here

June 2012

Legacy Fab Issues At The ConFab 2012

The ConFab 2012 highlighted sessions on the semiconductor industry’s blockbuster topics impacting advance technology manufacturing such as the transition to 450mm wafers and the increasing importance of 3D integration and advanced packaging. But this year the conference also allocated time to a discussion revolving around legacy manufacturing. Unlike finFETs and 450mm wafers, the challenges faced by mature production facilities are seldom in the headlines. However, as Sanjay Rajguru, Director at SEMATECH/ISMI, pointed out, over half of the current fab capacity comes from facilities that are more than 10 years old.

The challenges faced by older production facilities include equipment obsolescence, skills obsolescence, availability of parts, software and support and equipment capability extension and tool re-use. Maintaining “More than Moore” fabs is a major concern to semiconductor manufacturers as these operations reach 20 or even 30 years old.

At the ConFab 2012 Executive Roundtable representatives from Sematech/ISMI, IDMs, OEMs, equipment dealers, and industry consultants gathered to have an open discussion on concerns, roadblocks and possible solutions.

Licensing, Royalty and Service Revenues For 3rd Party SIP: A Market Analysis and Forecast for 2012

2010 was a very good year for the 3rd Party SIP market which rebounded from its first ever revenue decline in 2009 of -21.7%. The market rebounded in 2010, recording a 22.1% increase. 2011 continued this trend with another increase of 18.9%. However, looking at only SIP market annual revenues obscures several very interesting trends in the SIP market and in the broader System-on-a-Chip (SoC) market.

Table of Contents: 

ADI Raises the Bar on Low Power Consumption for MEMS Accelerometers

Analog Devices has announced a MEMS accelerometer with the lowest power consumption, the ADXL362. The company cites the following levels as the lowest in the industry:

  • Measurement current: 2 µA
  • Wakeup mode: 300 µA
  • Sleep current: 10 nA

The innovation that ADI has achieved is the design of the control circuit for the accelerometer. More intelligence and interrupt processing has been designed into the control logic. The MEMS sensor itself is also low power, but it was designed to fit the control circuit.

ADI has focused on the usage model for the accelerometer. This is not intended for portable consumer and smartphone applications which already have a cost effective solution. In these products consumers are accustomed to plugging in a device to recharge on a daily basis. ADI is targeting the ADXL362 at markets that require long battery life, on the order of years. These are applications that it is either costly and/or very difficult to change the battery. This includes monitoring remote or dangerous locations such as pipelines, bridges, tall buildings, etc. Other applications include sealed environments (military and medical monitoring), cattle tracking and gas meters.

The Semico Action Alert: MEMS Oscillators

Phoenix, Arizona June 12, 2012 - MEMS oscillators are poised for steep growth in the next few years. MEMS represented only 1.4% of all oscillator and clock generator circuits in 2011, but by the end of 2012, Semico expects to see at least a dozen vendors. Where is the opportunity for you to invest in this market?

MEMS Energy Harvesting: A Future Technology

Phoenix, Arizona June 10, 2012 - Energy harvesting holds great interest for many applications which involve powering of remote devices, portable products or applications that are difficult to power or replace the battery. The energy harvester is either the primary power source or it is used for extending battery life. The non-MEMS solutions have been used for many years in such things as military applications, industrial applications and in remote monitoring for oil and gas industry.

Analog Manufacturing Enters the 300mm Era

The analog IC market is a $42 billion business, representing 14% of the total semiconductor market. The market is fragmented, with over 90 companies participating, either as IDMs, foundry, or fabless. Revenues from analog are heavily weighted to communications products, but several market growth drivers are identified, including automotive, energy, mobility, and medical/healthcare.

Table of Contents: 

MEMS Energy Harvesting: An Early Growing Season

Energy harvesting holds great interest for many applications which involve powering of remote devices, portable products or applications that are difficult to power or replace the battery. The energy harvester is either the primary power source or it is used for extending battery life. The non-MEMS solutions have been used for many years in such things as military applications, industrial applications and in remote monitoring for oil and gas industry.

Table of Contents: 

The Tablet PC Usage Model Continues to Evolve For the Next Generation

About a week ago I had the pleasure of attending Phoenix ComicCon.  It is not as big a convention as ComicCon International in San Diego, but it keeps growing.  Frequent readers of the Semico Spin may remember I report on the consumer electronic trends I see at that show.

One of the big draws at Phoenix ComicCon was the 25th Anniversary of the TV show “Star Trek: the Next Generation.”  One of the panels was focused on actor Levar Burton.  I met Levar Burton at the Intel Developer’s Forum in 2010.  The video in this article was in the original article for IDF 2010.  Levar Burton appeared at IDF 2010 to promote Intel’s efforts in SmartTV.

In addition to his work as a performer, Mr. Burton also has a production company that is developing content for new media.  At IDF 2010 he did not go into details on these projects.  Besides Star Trek, Levar Burton is also well known as the producer and host of “Reading Rainbow”, (1983 to 2006) a TV show  that encouraged children to read.

Wafer Demand Summary and Assumptions 2Q12

The Wafer Demand Summary and Assumptions is a quarterly publication. It includes an excel spreadsheet with annual wafer demand by product by technology from 2002-2016. Product categories include DRAM, SRAM, NAND, NOR, Other Non-volatile, MPU, MCU, DSP, Computing Micro Logic, Communications, Other Micro Logic, Programmable Logic, Standard Cell, Gate Array, Analog, Discrete, Optoelectronics, Digital Bipolar. In addition, there is a five-page summary write-up providing the major assumptions behind the forecast and changes from the previous quarter.

Table of Contents: 

Wafer Demand Summary and Assumptions 2Q12

The Wafer Demand Summary and Assumptions is a quarterly publication. It includes an excel spreadsheet with annual wafer demand by product by technology from 2002-2016. Product categories include DRAM, SRAM, NAND, NOR, Other Non-volatile, MPU, MCU, DSP, Computing Micro Logic, Communications, Other Micro Logic, Programmable Logic, Standard Cell, Gate Array, Analog, Discrete, Optoelectronics, Digital Bipolar. In addition, there is a five-page summary write-up providing the major assumptions behind the forecast and changes from the previous quarter.

Table of Contents: 

Pages

Twitter