A new type of standard to be issued by the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) will help meet the need for speed in semiconductors.
Building a computer chip is a painstaking process. Once a chip is designed, a mask, or template, is created and used to transfer the fine circuit patterns to the surface of a silicon wafer
Major advances are still being made on magnetic disk drives despite competition from optical storage media like CD-ROM, DVD, semiconductor flash and smart cards.
Photofabrication Engineering Inc (PEI) has a line of custom-made photochemically-etched anodes and cathodes for fuel cells, heat exchangers, oxygen and hydrogen generators. These products have applications in the aerospace, automotive , biotechnology, medical, appliances, power and electrical/electronic industries.
The University of Newcastle upon Tyne, UK has joined forces with Atmel to create 'strained silicon' microchips, which involves adding a material called germanium to the traditional silicon used in semiconductor manufacturing.
Philips has announced a plan for a phased closure of its semiconductor fabrication operation (fab) in Albuquerque, New Mexico at the end of 2003.
It has been reported by the Semiconductor Industry Association (SIA) that global sales of semiconductors are recovering and are forecast to rise 1.8 % to $141 billion in 2002 and about 20% in each of the next 2 years.
Agilent has introduced what is claimed to be the industry's smallest four-port serialiser/deserialiser (SerDes) integrated circuit (IC) designed specifically for fibre channel storage area networking (SAN) equipment used to store and transport data between servers and larger corporate data centres.
Researchers from the Commerce Departments National Institute of Standards and Technology reported they have developed methods for characterising key structural features of porous films being eyed as insulators for the ultrathin metal wires that will connect millions of devices on future microprocessors and increase processor speed.
Intel are be releasing a PC microprocessor with a new capability developed with the assistance of Dean Tullsen, called hyper-threading. The processor executes instructions from multiple threads/programs at once, as if they all came from a single thread. The CPU duplicates the architectural state on each processor, while sharing one set of processor execution resources. It makes one processor appear as two to the operating system.
Scientist from the Fraunhofer Institute for Computer Graphics Research IGD are working on a voice analysis system and a camera with image processing. They are focussing on designing voice activated electrical appliances and electronic equipment. An example may be a video recorder that is activated by someone saying "Record the news on channel 7 this evening" or a lamp which is turned off by the voice command of "lamp out".
A wafer scale foundry-based method of hermetically sealing surface sensitive devices such as MEMS and RF has been released by Ziptronix. It operates at room temperature using industry standard tools and materials and incorporating both MEMS and IC technologies.
A team of Cornell University researchers is planning to develop a method to connect wires to organic transistors. They are hoping this could lead to computers that are smaller, cheaper and more flexible - literally.
Intel Corporation has made several technology breakthroughs that the company has integrated into its 90-nanometre process. It has used this process to build silicon structures and memory chips. It will put this process into volume manufacturing next year using 300 mm wafers.