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Adjust your Bookmarks - CompoundSemi News has a new format!
Tom Griffiths - Publisher

November 14, 2013...The original CompoundSemi News was introduced in 2000, innovating "content management" long before any types of standard frameworks came into being. As of our November 11, 2013 edition, we have launched an all new framework that moves to a headline-summary style, and which will allow us an even more real-time flow to the news you count on. All of 2013's CS News articles are available and fully searchable on the new site. The entire 13 year library of our leading compound semiconductor industry news coverage remains available through the search function of this site, and you'll find a handy link to that at on the top menu at the new

Change your bookmarks/favorites to mark as a replacement for any and all of your current CS Online bookmarks. You'll also want to update your RSS feed to to keep up with all the latest updates. Your CompoundSemi Email News dispatch has also enjoyed a format change, and will continue to arrive at your inbox automatically. If you aren't receiving the email news each Monday, sign up today.

We look forward to hearing from you with any feedback, or if you encounter what we're sure will be a glitch or two during the continuing changeover tweaks (this still involves computers, after all). You can reach Tom directly by tel or email that you'll find on the contact page.

TeraXion and Canada’s National Research Council Partner on Development of High Speed Modulators
CompoundSemi News Staff

September 16, 2013...TeraXion Inc., a maker of optical components and modules, and the National Research Council of Canada (NRC) have announced a strategic partnership. The partnership is to further develop and fabricate TeraXion’s new modulator products family and its next-generation Indium Phosphide high-speed modulators for 100 Gb/s and beyond coherent transmission systems. Work on the project will will take place at NRC’s Canadian Photonics Fabrication Centre in Ottawa.

“We are proud of this partnership with TeraXion and believe that combining our world-class process capabilities along with TeraXion’s design expertise will deliver results in the marketplace,” said François Cordeau, General Manager of the Information and Communications Technologies portfolio at the National Research Council of Canada.

“The new modulator concept will use a proprietary design to achieve world record low power consumption as well as reaching very high modulation speeds necessary for 100 Gb/s and above transmission,” said Ian Woods, Vice-President InP Platform at TeraXion Inc. “In addition, the form factor of this modulator will be ten times smaller than the competing technologies available today.”

BluGlass Awarded Nearly $3 Million Clean Technology Innovation Grant
CompoundSemi News Staff

July 29, 2013...BluGlass Limited of Australia announced that it has been awarded $2,999,255 in government funding for the company’s ‘versatile prototype deposition machine for higher efficiency, energy saving, lower cost LEDs on various substrates including silicon’. The project is funded through Australian Federal Government as part of the Clean Technology Innovation Program.

The project aims to significantly reduce the greenhouse gas emissions generated in producing LED devices. BluGlass claims its unique low temperature Remote Plasma Chemical Vapor Deposition (RPCVD) technology offers device manufacturers significant performance and cost advantages. The company estimates that for each RPCVD tool put into production could reduce greenhouse gas emissions of more than 39,000 tons of CO2 equivalent per RPCVD unit (based on 3.5 million LED lamps per annum).

The company plans to use the funding to accelerate research and development of GaN on silicon substrates. Silicon is a low cost, large diameter substrate that is currently limited in its application for LED semiconductor material growth. Bluglass asserts that this is because the high temperatures of MOCVD growth generally lead to bowing of the substrate, which leads to poor manufacturing yields. However, RPCVD is a low temperature process.

BluGlass CEO Giles Bourne today said “We are delighted to have been awarded this funding support for the continued advancement of our RPCVD technology. This represents an enormous commitment from the Commonwealth Government and demonstrates their continued belief in our ability to bring our breakthrough technology to market."

US Navy Awards Raytheon $279 Million Contract to Develop Next Generation Jamming Technology
CompoundSemi News Staff

July 15, 2013...Raytheon of El Segundo, California USA, reports that it has been awarded a $279.4 million contract from the US Navy. The cost-plus-incentive-fee contract from the U.S. Navy is to conduct the Technology Development phase of the Navy's Next Generation Jammer program. Raytheon said it will leverage its knowledge and experience as a tactical weapon systems integrator and will also leverage its Gallium nitride (GaN) based AESA technologies to provide an affordable, low-risk, comprehensive NGJ solution to the U.S. Navy. According to Raytheon, the technology offers warfighters enhanced electronic attack capabilities. NGJ will replace the ALQ-99 tactical jamming system currently on the Navy's EA-18G Growler tactical airborne electronic attack aircraft.

Raytheon's Space and Airborne Systems business, based in McKinney, Texas, will lead the Technology Development phase of the NGJ program with collaboration from Raytheon facilities in El Segundo, Calif.; Forest, Miss.; Dallas, Texas; Fort Wayne, Ind.; Largo, Fla.; and Andover, Mass.

"Raytheon provided the U.S. Navy with an innovative and efficient design capable of jamming current and future threats," said Rick Yuse, president of Raytheon's Space and Airborne Systems. "Our technology approach met the program requirements and leveraged our industry team's extensive experience in combat-proven, high-reliability agile-beam RF systems designed for demanding carrier-based aircraft environments."

Sol Voltaics Gets $6 Million Loan from Swedish Energy Agency
CompoundSemi News Staff

July 1, 2013...Sol Voltaics of Lund, Sweden, reported that the Swedish Energy Agency (SEA) has granted the company a $6 million conditional loan to further the commercial development of the company’s Solink technology. Solink is the company's gallium arsenide (GaAs) nanowire material for solar modules, which promises more efficiency. The loan is one of the largest ever issued to a company by the SEA. The company also announced that Erik Sauar, who served for more than ten years as the CTO and senior v.p. at solar manufacturer REC, has become an investor.

The company points out that gallium arsenide is the most efficient solar material available, but it is expensive. Sol Voltaics says it solves this problem by minimizing the amount of gallium arsenide needed so less than a gram of nanowires is required to produce Solink-enhanced modules. The company says that each gallium arsenide nanowire in Solink, acts as an independent solar cell. Therefore, the company says that a Solink-enhanced module is a vertically stacked device that generates energy from a wider light spectrum than a standard solar panel. According to Sol Voltaics, Solink is applied to conventional solar panels toward the end of the existing module production process with standard equipment using the company’s process called Aerotaxy.

Viveca Johansson, program manager at the SEA. stated, “The technology developed by Sol Voltaics holds the potential to simultaneously make solar competitive with fossil fuels at market prices while increasing the business case for developers and manufacturers.”

'LAST POWER' Project Reports Achievements
CompoundSemi News Staff

May 20, 2013...'LAST POWER', the EU program to develop reliable and economical power electronics, recently reported on the project's achievements. The project was launched in 2010 through the European Nanoelectronics Initiative Advisory Council (ENIAC) Joint Undertaking (JU), which links private companies, universities and public research centers to study of wide bandgap semiconductors (SiC and GaN). ‘LAST POWER’ is an acronym for 'Large Area silicon carbide Substrates and heTeroepitaxial GaN for POWER device applications'.

The main achievements stemmed from SiCrystal’s development of 150mm diameter substrates with a cut-off angle of 2°-off axis with comparable quality to the 100mm 4°-off material available at the project’s beginning. At LPE/ETC, a novel CVD (Chemical Vapor Deposition) reactor was employed to fabricate 600-1200V JBS (Junction Barrier Schottky) diodes and MOSFETs on 150mm 4H-SiC. The JBS diodes on 150 mm substrates had electrical performance comparable with the state-of-the-art 4°-off material. Chemical mechanical polishing (CMP) process, StepSiC ® reclamation and planarization from NOVASiC, enabled the JBS fabrication. The same company also developed epitaxial growth process for fabricating both MOSFET and JFET devices.

Acreo and FORTH with the support of CCR, jointly developed novel modules for high-temperature 4H-SiC JFETs and MOSFETs. CCR studied molding compounds and “lead-free” die-attach materials for reliable packaging.

ST Microelectronics also successfully produced AlGaN/GaN HEMTs epitaxial structures with a 3 μm thickness and 200V breakdown. Last Power collaborated with IMM-CNR, Unipress, and ST to develop ‘gold free’ production for normally-off AlGaN/GaN HEMTs that is fully compatible with the fabrication process at the ST production line.

Research into High-thermal-conductivity Substrates for GaN Electronics Gets UK Funding
CompoundSemi News Staff

April 29, 2013...Researchers from the University of Bath and the University of Bristol will receive funding totaling more than £823,800 from UK’s Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) over the next three years years. The project is to develop highly thermally conductive substrates for GaN electronics.

A £430,597 grant (EPSRC reference EP/K024337/1) was awarded to the University of Bath’s Department of Electronic and Electrical Engineering with principal investigator Dr DWE Allsopp joined by professor W Wang. A £393,218 grant (EPSRC reference EP/K024345/1) goes to the University of Bristol’s Department of Physics, with principal investigator professor M Kuball and professor D Cherns. IQE Silicon Compounds Ltd, NXP Semiconductors UK Ltd and Plessey Semiconductors Ltd will partner with the University of Bristol.

According to the researchers, AlGaN/GaN high electron mobility transistors (HEMTs) will enable future power conditioning applications, and be used for high efficiency military and civilian, microwave and RF systems. The researchers note that although the performance of AlGaN/GaN HEMTs presently reaches RF powers up to 40W/mm, at frequencies exceeding 300 GHz, its reliability, which is often thermally limited, is a serious issue.

The project aims to mitigate this issue through developing novel substrates that have higher heat extraction capabilities than SiC and developing low cost substrates that have improved heat extraction compared to GaN-on-silicon for more cost sensitive power electronics. The researchers assert that improvement in heat spreading will imcrease reliability and circuit efficiency and ease Gan electronics constraints.

U.S. Photovoltaic Manufacturing Consortium and NREL Collaborate to Develop Thin Film PV Cells and Modules
CompoundSemi News Staff

March 18, 2013...The National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) and the Photovoltaic Manufacturing Consortium (PVMC) have agreed to improve manufacturing of solar cells, including thin film, advanced silicon, and future materials. These national partnerships are modeled after the research from not-for-profit consortium, Semiconductor Manufacturing Technology (SEMATECH) and the College of Nanoscale Science and Engineering (CNSE).

NREL’s pioneering work in renewable energy and photovoltaic research includes establishing processes, measurement and characterization capabilities, and gaining expertise in all the major PV conversion technologies. In the collaboration, PVMC will reportedly leverage decades of knowledge and capabilities in materials and cell processing, advanced testing, metrology and materials analysis, and modeling. Additionally, the NREL and PVMC collaboration will be expanded to other national labs.

"Through this initiative, we look forward to enhancing the manufacturability of thin film solar PV technologies, which is critical to enabling increased usage in residential, commercial and utility applications across the country," commented Dr. Pradeep Haldar, PVMC Chief Operating and Technology Officer and CNSE Vice President for Clean Energy Programs.

"Together we are leading the national effort to help facilitate the transfer and commercialization of future solar products, equipment, and manufacturing lines including thin film, advanced silicon, and future materials," said Joe Hudgins, senior VP of business development and strategic alliances, PVMC.

Several on-going initiatives are currently attempting improve PV manufacturing development such as the recently signed Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) of SEMI and PVMC to cooperate on standards and roadmap activities in the solar thin film industry.

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