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Centrotherm subsidiary joins Sematech‚??s FEP to research low-temperature processing techniques

10 April 2012 | Wafer Processing

The latest machines are installed at Cnetrotherm's base last yearSematech has announced that the centrotherm photovoltaics AG subsidiary, centrotherm thermal solutions, will join its Front End Program (FEP) to develop low-temperature processing techniques for use in high-performance logic and advanced memory applications such as metal oxide RRAM devices.



Tool Order: Himax Technologies places repeat order for EV Group‚??s IQ Aligner system

28 March 2012 | Wafer Processing

Himax Technologies, a leading producer of CMOS image sensors, semiconductor devices and power management devices, has placed a repeat order for an IQ Aligner UV nanoimprint lithography (UV-NIL) system from EV Group. The IQ Aligner system will be shipped and installed at Himax’s Tainan facility in Taiwan.



Tool Order: Camtek tapped for US$3.5 million worth of Falcon wafer inspection tools

27 March 2012 | Wafer Processing

A Camtek Falcon 2D and 3D inspection modelCamtek, the automated and technological solution provider, has announced that it has booked orders exceeding US$3.5 million for its Falcon family of automated wafer inspection products. The order was from an unnamed global outsourced semiconductor assembly and test house (OSAT) and pertains to various applications within the backend semiconductor process. The product delivery will come in the current and following two quarters.


Intel consolidates its lead as the world‚??s top chipmaker

27 March 2012 | Intel, Wafer Processing

Industry market monitor IHS iSuppli has confirmed that American multinational chipmaker Intel has extended its lead in the semiconductor industry after a successful 2011. The announcement follows the company’s posting of its financial figures earlier this year; Intel’s income represents 15.6% of the total semiconductor industry revenue. Second placed Samsung Electronics represents 9.2% of the industry after seeing only marginal growth. Samsung has been gaining on Intel’s market share in recent years following the release of its hugely successful Galaxy SII handset in 2011 and securing a contract to supply some of the chips for Apple’s iPhone.


February book-to-bill passes parity as equipment orders reach US$1.33 billion

23 March 2012 | Wafer Processing
The recovery in equipment sales continued for the fourth consecutive month with North America-based manufacturers of semiconductor equipment posted $1.33 billion in orders in February 2012. The SEMI book-to-bill went over parity at 1.03 for the first time since September 2011 and the best bookings since August 2011. The bookings recovery is also the steepest seen since the last major up-cycle that started in mid-2009. Read more >>

Applied Materials losses top equipment supplier bragging rights

14 March 2012 | Wafer Processing
According to VLSIresearch, Applied Materials is no longer the leading semiconductor equipment supplier, a position it has held as a right of passage for three decades. Recent comments from Applied’s Mike Splinter, regarding the capital spending impact of lithography tools on the company’s available TAM, suggest he was merely softening the blow he already knew, as lithography supplier, ASML took the top honours in 2011, the first time it has done so in the history of the company. Read more >>

Tokyo Electron pays Oerlikon US$275 million for PV thin film operations

06 March 2012 | Wafer Processing
Oerlikon Group’s loss-making Oerlikon Solar, the originator of the turnkey thin-film business model with a-Si and tandem-junction thin-film technology, is being sold to Tokyo Electron (TEL) for US$275 million. Oerlikon is focusing on its other engineering divisions as part of revenue growth avenues. The deal is expected to be concluded over the next few months with more details to be provided on Monday when quarterly results are reported. TEL had been a sales representative in Asia for the thin-film technology. Read more >>

Tool Order: Applied Materials and Novellus rewarded with further purchases from TSMC

24 February 2012 | Wafer Processing
TSMC has placed further orders with Applied Materials and Novellus Systems. Ending the week with two separate batches of orders valued at US$72.43 million was Applied Materials, while Novellus received a purchase order valued at approximately US$17.2 million. Read more >>

SEMI book-to-bill continues 4-month rise

24 February 2012 | Wafer Processing
Boosted by foundry and logic IC manufacturers spending habits over the winter months, the SEMI book-to-bill ratio continued a 4-month recovery in January with a 0.95 ratio. North America-based semiconductor equipment suppliers posted US$1.18 billion in orders in the first month of the year, which could have been higher if there were any lithography companies based in the US. Though bookings and billings remain below 2011 levels, January’s preliminary booking figure is on par with August 2011 levels. Coupled to key equipment suppliers recent comments regarding expected spending in 2012, the upwards trend started in December, 2011 looks set to continue in the first-half of the year. Read more >>

Applied Materials expects wafer fab equipment spending above US$30 billion

20 February 2012 | Wafer Processing
Despite overcapacity in key markets such as DRAM, wafer fab equipment spending is projected to be above US$30 billion in 2012, according to Applied Materials. Mike Splinter said in a conference call to discuss quarterly results last week that FEOL capital spending in 2011 actually exceeded its previous forecast, ending the year at approximately US$35 billion. Spending on lithography equipment were said to reached  record highs as memory makers implemented device shrinks by upgrading lines with 193 ArF immersion systems. Read more >>