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Veeco Introduces Website for Buying and Selling of Pre-Owned Equipment
LIGHTimes News Staff

July 11, 2014...In a significant change to Veeco Intrument's business model, the company of Plainview, New York USA has launched the Veeco MarketPlace website, The website is an original equipment manufacturer (OEM) brokerage that helps buyers and sellers determine fair prices for pre-owned Veeco metal organic chemical vapor deposition (MOCVD), Ion Beam Etch (IBE), and physical vapor deposition (PVD) systems. The site will also offer assets from Veeco Certified Partners, such as SurplusGLOBAL, Inc., a secondary equipment supplier. All equipment posted on the website is eligible for Veeco's exclusive pre-purchase assessments and logistical support.

The site allows potential buyers to see pre-owned equipment for sale and determine whether to purchase it as-is or with Veeco services. Veeco also plans to offer equipment checks, refurbish-and-repair programs, upgrades and logistical and relocation services. Veeco says that sellers who post their pre-owned equipment on the site can get advice and assistance from its sales team to advertise and promote the equipment to a specific target market.

“The Veeco MarketPlace brings great value to both the buyer and seller,” said Guy Shechter, vice president, Veeco Certified Equipment and Services Marketing. “With this new site, sellers gain access to their targeted customers through and with OEM support, and buyers can make quick, informed decisions on prices and purchases. Once the buyer and seller agree on the fair market value for the asset, Veeco can provide valuable services and upgrades to extend the life and improve the productivity of the system.”.

Industry insiders have speculated that in addition to changing the Veeco's business model, the new website could potentially lower the costs for companies wanting to fabricate LED chips.

University of Tokyo Researchers Fabricate Red, Blue, and Green InGaN LEDs on Glass Substrates with Sputtering
LIGHTimes News Staff

June 26, 2014...Researchers from the University of Tokyo have used a sputtering method transcribing GaN LEDs on glass substrates. The new fabrication technique may eventually help reduce manufacturing costs or help develop OLED light panels. The researchers have not yet measured external quantum efficiency or luminous efficiency for any single color. The team is currently testing the internal quantum efficiency at low temperatures.
The researchers note that InGaN LEDs are limited to applications in small devices because InGaN LED fabrication involves expensive metal organic vapor phase epitaxy on single-crystal wafers. However, the researchers successfully employed sputtering, a less expensive epitaxial growth process, on large-area substrates to fabricate large-area InGaN LED displays.
The use of multilayer graphene buffer layers allowed the growth of highly c-axis-oriented GaN films even on amorphous substrates. The team fabricated blue, red, and green InGaN LEDs. The researchers believe that their method of sputtering to produce full-color LEDs on amorphous substrates could be adapted to fabricate large-area inorganic LED displays on glass substrates. Already, sputtering is frequently used in the LCD industry.

The researchers point out that advances in the glass industry can offer roll-to-roll processing of flexible glass foils. Furthermore, the team contends that a combination of these methods may lead to the development of large-area flexible inorganic devices.

Tawain LED Makers Account for More than 25% of All MOCVD Systems in Operation
LIGHTimes News Staff

June 12, 2014...Of  the 1917 MOCVD systems in operation globally as of May 2014, Taiwan-based LED makers accounted for 28.6%. Japan-based LED makers accounted for 23.8%, China-based makers  22.9%, and South Korea-based makers 14.1%, according to Digitimes Research. The MOCVD systems used to produce sapphire wafers had a total monthly capacity of 888,290 4-inch wafers. Of the sapphire wafer capacity, Taiwan-based makers accounted for 44.5%, China-based makers 34.2% and South Korea-based makers 19%, Digitimes Research noted. Digitimes Research found that Sapphire ingot makers  have a total monthly production capacity of 7.39 million mm in 2014, with 770,600mm that can be sliced into 4-inch wafers.

Comprel to Distribute Plessey GaN-on-Si LEDs
LIGHTimes News Staff

June 4, 2014...Comprel Srl, an Italian electronics distributor, has agreed to  distribute Plessey Semiconductor's gallium nitride-on-silicon  (GaN-on-Si) LEDs. Plessey reported the new distribution agreement with  Comprel, which is headquartered in Nova, Milanese. Plessey says the agreement  will help the company expand its European distribution with coverage in the  Italian market for its GaN-on-Si LED products. Plessey’s MaGIC™  (Manufactured on GaN-on-Si I/C) High Brightness LED (HBLED) technology  is renowned for its ability to cut LED lighting costs using standard silicon manufacturing techniques.

 Michele Busnelli, Commercial Managing Director of Comprel, said,  “Comprel is very happy to be a partner of Plessey Semiconductors." Busnell added, "The GaN-on-Si  technology is going to be a revolution in the SSL market. I am sure that  with the innovative products of Plessey and our deep knowledge of the  market we are going to be very successful.”

 David Owen, Plessey’s Regional Sales Director, said, “Comprel has a  dedicated team working in the Italian lighting market place which will  accelerate the time to market for Plessey GaN-on-Si LEDs in this high  growth region.”

New 3M LED Chip Packaging Substrate Provides Economical Substitute for Ceramic
LIGHTimes News Staff

June 2, 2014...3M Electronics Materials Solutions Division in Austin, Texas, launched its new LED Chip Packaging Substrate that provides a cost-effective alternative to ceramic substrates. The company says that the new substrate, which combines copper and polyimide,  can meet the thermal and electrical performance that high-power LED chips need at a competitive price compared to ceramic substrates. The substrate comes either in a tray or reel format. According to the company, the reel format will help the industry evolve to reel-to-reel manufacturing that is expected to lower manufacturing cost. The company will showcase the chip packaging substrate at Lightfair International, June 3-5, 2014 in Las Vegas, NV at the 3M booth (# 4821).
The LED chip can sit directly on top of a large conduit area, which a polyimide frame holds without adhesives. 3M says that substrate assembly does not require adhesives. Therefore, the substrate can be used at higher temperatures. The substrate can also reportedly work with wire bond and flip chip connections.
“LED chip manufacturers now have an alternative to ceramic substrates,” said Terry Noronha, global business manager, 3M Electronics Materials Solutions Division. “3M has harnessed more than 40 years in the circuit industry and 50 years in light management to find a new way to move the LED lighting industry forward. Not only does the 3M substrate meet LED requirements at reduced cost, but it enables reel-to-reel manufacturing with precision engineering – what we believe to be the future of efficient high-volume manufacturing.”

Plessey Semiconductor Expands GaN-on-Silicon LED Production with Aixtron MOCVD System
LIGHTimes News Staff

May 28, 2014...Plessey Semiconductors Ltd reported that the company has ordered another CRIUS II-XL MOCVD system to expand its production capacity for fabricating Gallium Nitride LEDs on Silicon wafers (GaN-on-Si). The Close Coupled Showerhead system, which was recently delivered with a 7x6-inch configuration, will supplement the Aixtron production system that the company already owns.

Dr. Keith Strickland, chief technology officer for Plessey said, “Our MaGICTM (Manufactured onGaN-on-Si I/C) LED product in particular has been successfully launched this past year. As a result, we now plan to step up our production. To this end, and given our positive experience with Aixtron’s CRIUS II-XL system, we have purchased a further system of this type and are thus maintaining our successful cooperation with Aixtron.”

“CRIUS II-XL convinced us with its high throughput rates and low operating costs for GaN layer growth on 6-inch silicon substrates. Moreover, Aixtron is actively supporting us in further optimizing our production processes," added Mike Snaith, Operations Director for Plessey.

“We are delighted by the renewed order from Plessey," said Dr. Frank Schulte, Vice President Aixtron Europe. “It offers further confirmation that Gallium Nitride-on-Silicon, a high-performance, efficient epitaxy process, is becoming increasingly established as an alternative to growth on sapphire. The associated potential production cost savings will further promote the establishment of LED as a light source. Aixtron is well prepared for this market development and will also be supporting Plessey in further optimizing its GaN-on-Silicon technology.”

Substrates are Impacting LED Front-end Business, According to Yole Development
LIGHTimes News Staff

May 1, 2014...Market Research Firm Yole Development says that substrates are clearly impacting LED fabrication throughout the LED industry. "New LED substrate is one of the key topics impacting the LED front-end industry," said Pars Mukish, technology & market analyst at Yole Development (Yole). “Substrates are clearly shaping this industry with the start of the use of Silicon and bulk GaN as a potential replacement of sapphire," he added.

In Yole Development's latest report about the influence of substrates on the LED manufacturing business, Pars Mukish explains the need for cost reduction in LED fabrication and evaluates emerging substrates and related technologies including GaN-on-GaN LEDs and GaN-on-Si LEDs. Yole says that LED makers have looked to reduce costs to be competitive with other substrate technologies.

According to Yole, companies are switching to larger size 6" sapphire wafers, and Taiwanese companies are switching to 4” wafers to be competitive in terms of the bill of materials. Additionally, companies are increasing their use of patterned sapphire substrates. Yole says increased demand for patterned sapphire substrates has made PSS mainstream in the market (87% share as of Q1-2014). Despite the increased demand, some questions remain concerning key patent holders’ strategies.

Yole points out that certain companies have developed and have begun mass production of GaN-on-Si and GaN-on-GaN LEDs. For example, Soraa has begun mass producing GaN LEDs on bulk GaN substrates, , and Toshiba has begun mass production of LEDs on silicon.

“However, market penetration of these alternative substrates will be secondary to future improvements in terms of performance and cost," said Pars Mukish indicated that GaN-on-GaN and GaN-on-Silicon LEDs have to improve in performance and cost to fully compete with sapphire-based LEDs. Otherwise, GaN-on-Si and GaN-on-GaN LEDs will not be able to fully compete with sapphire-based LEDs.

Yole notes that GTAT and Apple have partnered to set up a large sapphire manufacturing plant to produce sapphire components for more rugged smart phone lenses and screens. Yole expects the impact of the sapphire industry on the LED industry to become bigger in the future because of the recent partnership between GTAT and Apple (Q4-2013) to set up a large sapphire production plant ($1 billion). The plant, which has a rough capacity of 2 times the current qualified sapphire capacity for the entire world market could totally modify the structure and evolution of the sapphire and LED industries in the next few years.

Unity Opto Buys Facility to Increase LED Lighting Capacity

April 25, 2014...Unity Opto Technology, an LED packaging company based in Taiwan, has obtained an existing factory for NT$1.23 billion (US$40.7 million). The company reportedly plans to use the facility in Northern Taiwan to increase LED lighting production capacity to meet order demand from the US and Europe, according to a Digitimes article. The factory sits on a 6,091 square meter pit and has a total floor space of 21,242 square meters. Unity Opto expects to use the facility to help expand its monthly LED lighting capacity from one million lamps, tubes, and light bulbs currently to over three million units. The company indicated that its proportion of revenue from LED lighting is expected to exceed 35% beginning in Q3 of 2014.

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