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Wednesday 1st January 2003
The World Semiconductor Trade Statistics show world sales of ICs at $11.37bn in May, down 10.5% year-on-year. Asia Pacific showed an increase of 22.4% to $4.16bn. Europe was down 20.6% at $2.24bn. The Americas and Japan were down 21.0% at $2.65bn and 25.9% at $2.33bn, respectively.
Wednesday 1st January 2003
Worldwide silicon demand will amount to a surface area of 2.58km2 (3997m square inches) this year, according to VLSI Research. Next year this will increase to 4.60km2. In 2001, 2.41km2 of silicon were sold, according to VLSI. In terms of wafers, 118m were sold in 2001 and this year's expectation is for 120m. Next year, 138m are due to be shipped. By 2007, 300mm wafers are expected to account for 46% of silicon demand, with 200mm supplying 36%.
Wednesday 1st January 2003
The recession in the telecoms sector was underlined last week with Bookham Technology announcing it is to close two out of its four manufacturing sites. Facilities in the UK (Swindon) and USA (Maryland) are to close.
Wednesday 1st January 2003
Philips Electronics has developed a new Flash memory option for its 0.18micron baseline CMOS process, CMOS18. The new CMOS18-FFLV (Fast-Flash, Low-Voltage) option offers memory densities approaching 1Mbit/mm2. Philips claims that CMOS18-FFLV implements the smallest area Flash memory blocks in the industry.
Wednesday 1st January 2003
Swiss higher education and research centre ETH Zurich has opened a CHF10m laboratory focused on micro- and nano-scale science. The venture is called
Wednesday 1st January 2003
Shipley Europe has opened a GBP3m distribution centre in the UK. The storage area contains nearly 7000 pallet spaces, including more than 1000 in temperature controlled zones dedicated to sensitive photoresists for semiconductor and electronic component manufacturing. Construction began in July last year, and the centre opened for business in April 2002.
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Wednesday 1st January 2003
TriQuint Semiconductor reports that it has completed two acquisitions - the Infineon Technologies' gallium arsenide and IBM's wireless phone chipset businesses (Bulletins 431, May 7, 2002; 438, June 24, 2002). The first transaction includes development and marketing activities with 60 former Infineon employees. TriQuint will not acquire the manufacturing operations, but rather enter into an interim supply agreement with Infineon.
Wednesday 1st January 2003
Frankfurt-based Covion Organic Semiconductors has signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) for co-operation in organic semiconductor materials with Taiwan's Industrial Technology Research Institute (ITRI). The agreement covers future R&D project development and co-operation in chemical engineering, innovative materials and opto-electronic devices with ITRI divisions and centres in Taiwan. Covion says it is the only company offering both small molecule and polymer light emitting materials on a commercial scale for flat panel display and opto-electronic applications.
Wednesday 1st January 2003
ASM International has been granted US patents on its low-k dielectric PECVD (plasma enhanced chemical vapor deposition) film deposition technology (Nos.6,352,945, 6,383,955 and 6,410,463). Tominori Yoshida, product manager of ASM's Low-k Modules group, reports:
Wednesday 1st January 2003
A Texas-based epitaxial wafer supplier, GlobiTech, has been qualified to produce isotopically pure silicon-28 epitaxial wafers using silicon-28 trichlorosilane. Isotopic material developer Isonics has agreed to work with GlobiTech to supply silicon-28 wafers. Isotopically purified silicon-28 has 60% higher thermal conductivity than natural silicon and can reduce the self heating of ICs.
Wednesday 1st January 2003
If Gartner Dataquest is to be believed, the 1 billionth PC was shipped in April 2002. The market researchers expect the next billion mark to be passed in 2008. This seems a tall order, but Dataquest says the industry will receive a boost when there is
Wednesday 1st January 2003
German mixed-signal test equipment maker SZ Testsysteme reports a renewed recession in the past three months. Customers have postponed orders for Q3 into the next financial year. Sales of EUR25m are expected,
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Wednesday 1st January 2003
US DRAM company Micron Technology held its first ever European summit in London, UK, on July 10. Steve Appleton - chairman, CEO and president - pointed with pride to Micron's US patent record in 2001, coming second only to IBM. In effect, this makes Micron the No.1 in semiconductor patents, he argued, since many of IBM's patents are not IC related. [The US Patent and Trademark Office puts Micron (1643) at No.4 internationally, after IBM (3411), NEC (1953) and Canon (1877). So, Micron is the No.2 company from the UNITED STATES. The No.1 ranking for a semiconductor company still stands. Bulletin 415, January 14, 2002.]
Wednesday 1st January 2003
STMicroelectronics has started volume deliveries of its ST19XT34 secure microcontroller that can receive Universal Serial Bus (USB) certification for use in smartcards and tokens. The device integrates both USB and standard ISO 7816 interfaces. The USB interface includes full clock recovery, eliminating the need for external components such as clock crystals and pull-up resistors. The USB interface can communicate at speeds greater than the traditional smartcard ISO 7816 standard.
Wednesday 1st January 2003
ChipMOS Technologies (Bermuda) claims development of a new high-speed wafer test technology for probe testing 32 in parallel DDR (double data rate) DRAMs at 200MHz clock rates and 400Mbit/sec data rates. The development project was financially supported by the Taiwanese government. The technology was developed using Teradyne's Probe-One Memory Test System, TEL's P12XL Prober, and FormFactor's BladeRunner technology area array probe cards. ChipMOS now has a pilot line for 200mm and 300mm wafers in place.
Wednesday 1st January 2003
The transaction should be finalised within the next 60 days, subject to completion of certain conditions. Upon completion of the transaction Amkor intends to repay all of a $97m term loan under its secured bank credit agreement. A $100m revolver agreement will remain in place. Dongbu has also agreed to buy 12m newly issued shares of ASI. With these transactions, Amkor's ownership interest in Anam Semiconductor will be reduced to approximately 22%.
Wednesday 1st January 2003
Alcatel Optronics has sold its Netherlands operation in a Management Buy Out (MBO). The non-telecom MEMS and planar design software operation was the result of two start-ups bought by Kymata prior to its being acquired in its turn by Alcatel Optronics. The new entity, called C2V, is independently owned and financially supported by Greenfield Capital Partners, a Dutch private equity firm. A C2V team will be dedicated to Alcatel Optronics for a one and a half year period on a planar design R&D programme.
Wednesday 1st January 2003
Gartner Dataquest is looking forward to growth in the wafer fab equipment market with 5.3% growth year-on-year expected in Q3 with revenues reaching $5.2bn. The whole year, however, will show a decline of 20% from $23.7bn in 2001 to $18.9bn this year. Semiconductor capital spending for 2002 is expected to be $35.3bn, down 20.9% on 2001's $44.6bn. The foundry sector will account for much of the increased spending this year. Lack of demand and overcapacity are still slowing the market with spending focused on new technology. Next year, capital spending is expected to reach $47.3bn, 34% up. Equipment buying will be worth $26.9bn, up 42.1%.
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Wednesday 1st January 2003
Taiwan's two leading foundries report their June sales report. TSMC's sales were TWD15.615bn, up 83.4% on June 2001. UMC also substantially improved on 2001 with TWD6.711bn in revenues, up 58.4%. Half year sales were up 21.5% at TSMC (TWD79.972bn) and down 20.4% at UMC (TWD30.739bn).
Wednesday 1st January 2003
Air Products and Chemicals Electronics Division's Schumacher unit is to serve as global master distributor of three new liquid chemical vapour deposition (CVD) precursors from Dow Corning (Z4MS, ZTOMCATS and Z2DM). The new products are multifunctional silicon source liquids specifically designed for thin film dielectric deposition processes for passivation, etch stop, hard mask and copper diffusion barrier films. The new alliance builds on an agreement between the companies under which Air Products serves as the worldwide master distributor of Dow Corning's Z3MS CVD precursor (trimethylsilane), which is used instead of silane or tetraethyl orthosilicate-based CVD materials.
Wednesday 1st January 2003
A bleak beginning to the Semicon West show in California was provided courtesy of Intel's Q2 results. The company is to cut expenses by $2.1bn in Q3 with 4000 people set to lose their jobs. Further, capital spending for the year is to be reduced from $5.5bn to $5.1-5.2bn, The 2002 R&D budget will be $100m less at $4.0bn from $4.1bn. Q3 revenues are expected to be $6.3-6.9bn.
Wednesday 1st January 2003
The US National Electronics Manufacturing Initiative (NEMI) has launched a
Wednesday 1st January 2003
International SEMATECH (ISMT) and the State University of New York (SUNY) University at Albany-SUNY (UAlbany) plan a joint five-year $320m programme on next generation lithography. The letter of intent calls for negotiations to start immediately on the formation of a strategic alliance - to be known as International SEMATECH North (ISMTN) - to conduct R&D on advanced lithography infrastructure for extreme ultraviolet (EUV) processes. The programme would be managed by International SEMATECH and housed in UAlbany's 300mm wafer facility. A final agreement on the strategic alliance is hoped for by the end of Q3 this year.
Wednesday 1st January 2003
Microchip Technology has executed an agreement to acquire a semiconductor manufacturing complex in Gresham OR from Fujitsu Microelectronics for $183.5m.

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