Showing posts with label Silicon. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Silicon. Show all posts

Wednesday, July 18, 2018

Intel celebrates its 50th birthday

Intel marked the 50th anniversary of its founding on July 18, 1968 by Robert Noyce and Gordon Moore.

A ceremony in New York City and Santa Clara, California was presided over by Bob Swan, Intel’s chief financial officer and interim chief executive officer. Instead of ringing the Nasdaq opening bell, Intel’s well-known five-note jingle was played accompanied by the Intel bong.

“We’re only just beginning to explore the impact that technologies like autonomous driving, artificial intelligence and quantum computing can have. And over the next several decades, we’ll create computing platforms that make the world a better place — from safer and smarter models of mobility to the eradication of disease,” stated Bob Swan, Intel CFO and interim CEO.

Intel also set a new record for most synchronized drones flying in formation -- 500.


Wednesday, July 4, 2018

Baidu develops its own AI chip, rolls out first autonomous bus

At its second annual developer conference in Beijing this week, Baidu unveiled its "Kunlun" processor for AI applications.


Technical details on the new Kunlun silicon were scarce, but the company said its cloud-to-edge AI chip is built to accommodate high-performance requirements of a wide variety of AI scenarios, including deep learning and facial recognition.

Baidu is known to be developing FPGA designs for a number of years.

Baidu also announced volume production of China’s first commercially deployed fully autonomous bus. The first 100 "Apolong" buses are ready for the road.


Thursday, May 31, 2018

Marvell posts revenue of $605 billion, next quarter excludes $7m is sales to ZTE

Marvell Technology Group reported revenue for its first quarter of fiscal 2019 was $605 million, which exceeded the midpoint of the Company's guidance provided on March 8, 2018. GAAP net income from continuing operations for the first quarter of fiscal 2019 was $129 million, or $0.25 per diluted share. Non-GAAP net income from continuing operations for the first quarter of fiscal 2019 was $165 million, or $0.32 per diluted share. Cash flow from operations for the first quarter was $129 million.

"Fiscal 2019 is off to a strong start, driven by the performance of our storage, networking and connectivity businesses which grew 7% year over year in Q1. Marvell's R&D engine is executing well, and our newly announced products are fueling a growing design win pipeline," said Marvell President and CEO Matt Murphy. "Overall, I'm pleased with the results and thank the entire Marvell team for their effort and contribution."

Revenue for the company's second quarter of 2019 is expected to be $600 million to $630 million. The guidance range excludes approximately $7 million in revenue from a Chinese OEM due to the trade restrictions imposed by the U.S. government.

Monday, May 21, 2018

IDC forecasts semiconductor growth of 7.7%, reaching $450B in 2018

IDC is predicting that worldwide semiconductor revenue will grow for the third consecutive year in 2018 to $450 billion, up 7.7% over 2017, down from 24% in 2017.

IDC's new Semiconductor Applications Forecaster (SAF) also forecasts that semiconductor revenues will log a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 2.9% from 2017-2022, reaching $482 billion in 2022.

"Market consolidation in the semiconductor industry over the past five years continues to shape the competitive landscape for semiconductor suppliers as each company continues to refine its core markets and make acquisitions to find new and emerging sectors for growth. The pace of change and technology is expected to accelerate as machine learning and autonomous systems enable a more diverse set of architectures to address the opportunity. This will fuel the engine of growth for semiconductor technology over the next decade," said Mario Morales, program vice president, Semiconductors at IDC.

Some key findings from IDC's Semiconductor Application Forecaster (excluding memory) include:


  • Semiconductor revenue for the computing industry segment will decline 4.0% this year and will show a negative CAGR of -0.7% for the 2017-2022 forecast period. Two bright spots for the computing segment are computing and enterprise SSDs, growing in high double digits and 9.8% CAGR respectively for 2017-2022.
  • Semiconductor revenue for the mobile wireless communications segment will grow 5.5% year over year this year with a CAGR of 5.8% for 2017-2022. Semiconductor revenue for 4G mobile phones will experience an annual growth rate of 10.9% in 2018 and a CAGR of 3.1% for 2017-2022. 5G will also drive growth in the later part of the forecast as the technology becomes mainstream by the middle of the next decade.
  • Communications infrastructure semiconductors are forecast to grow at a 1.7% CAGR from 2017-2022 with the strongest growth coming from consumer networks.
  • The automotive market and the industrial markets will continue to be the leading areas of growth for the semiconductor market throughout the forecast period, growing at a 9.6% and 6.8% CAGR from 2017-2022. 

Thursday, May 17, 2018

Tachyum announces its Universal Processor Platform

Tachyum, a start-up based in San Jose, California with offices in Slovakia, unveiled its new processor family – codenamed “Prodigy” – that combines the advantages of CPUs with GP-GPUs, and specialized AI chips in a single universal processor platform. The company says its processor architecture attains ten times the processing power per watt compared to conventional designs.

A key innovation of the design is the ability to connect very fast transistor with very slow wires, but technical details on the device physics have not yet been disclosed.

The universal processor promises programming ease comparable to a CPU with performance and efficiency comparable to GP-GPU. It is designed to handle hyperscale workloads, AI, HPC, and other demanding applications

Tachyum claims its Prodigy universal processor will enable a super-computational system for real-time full capacity human brain neural network simulation by 2020. One target application would be the real-time Human Brain Project, where there’s a need for more than 1019 Flops (10,000,000,000,000,000,000 floating-point operations per second - 10 exaflop).

“Rather than build separate infrastructures for AI, HPC and conventional compute, the Prodigy chip will deliver all within one unified simplified environment, so for example AI or HPC algorithms can run while a machine is otherwise idle or underutilized,” said Tachyum CEO Dr. Radoslav ‘Rado’ Danilak. “Instead of supercomputers with a price tag in the hundreds of millions, Tachyum will make it possible to empower hyperscale datacenters to produce more work in a radically more efficient and powerful format, at a lower cost.”

“Despite efficiency gains from virtualization, cloud computing, and parallelism, there are still critical problems with datacenter resource utilization particularly at a size and scale of hundreds of thousands of servers,” said Christos Kozyrakis, professor of electrical engineering and computer science at Stanford, who leads the university’s Multiscale Architecture & Systems Team (MAST), a research group for cloud computing, energy-efficient hardware, and operating systems. “Tachyum’s breakthrough processor architecture will deliver unprecedented performance and productivity.” Kozyrakis is a corporate advisor to Tachyum.

http://tachyum.com


  • Tachyum is headed by Dr. Radoslav ‘Rado’ Danilak, who previously was founder and CEO of Skyera, a supplier of ultra-dense solid-state storage systems, acquired by WD in 2014. He also was cofounder and CTO of SandForce, which was acquired by LSI in 2011 for $377M. Its cofounders include Rodney Mullendore (previously Sandforce, Nishan Systems, Sandia National Labs); Igor Shevlyakov (previously Skyera); Ken Wagner (previously Wave Computing, Silicon Analystics and Theseus Logic).
  • Tachyum is funded by IPM Growth, the venture capital division of InfraPartners Management LLP.

Monday, April 30, 2018

Semiconductor sales top $111 billion in Q1, up 20%

Worldwide sales of semiconductors reached $111.1 billion during the first quarter of 2018, an increase of 20 percent compared to the first quarter of 2017, but 2.5 percent less than the fourth quarter of 2017, according to the Semiconductor Industry Association (SIA). Sales for the month of March 2018 came in at $37.0 billion, an increase of 20 percent compared to the March 2017 total of $30.8 billion and 0.7 percent more than the February 2018 total of $36.8 billion.

"The global semiconductor market has demonstrated impressive growth through the first quarter of 2018, far exceeding sales through the same point in 2017, which was a record year for semiconductor revenues," said John Neuffer, president and CEO, Semiconductor Industry Association. "Sales in March increased year-to-year for the 20th consecutive month. All regional markets experienced double-digit growth compared to last year, and all major semiconductor product categories experienced year-to-year growth, with memory products continuing to lead the way."

Friday, April 27, 2018

Mediatek halts shipments to ZTE

Following an order from Taiwan's Bureau of Foreign Trade, Mediatek has suspended shipment of its chips and components to ZTE, according to Nikkei Asian Review.

Mediatek is the second largest global supplier of systems-on-chip (SoC) solutions for mobile devices. It also supplies a range of connectivity chips for home networking and broadband CPE, along with a new line of optical components.

https://s.nikkei.com/2HFl4q4

Sunday, April 22, 2018

Alibaba acquires C-SKY Microsystems for embedded IoT CPUs

Alibaba has acquired Hangzhou Zhongtian Microsystem Co. (C-SKY Microsystems, a leading developer of embedded CPUs, for an undisclosed sum.

C-SKY, which was founded in 2001 and is based in Hangzhou's Hi-Tech Zone, offers a series of 32-bit "C-SKY" embedded CPU cores based on independent intellectual property rights. The chips are widely used in Internet of Things intelligent hardware, digital audio and video, information security, networking and communications, industrial control, and automotive electronics.


Friday, April 20, 2018

Intel cuts water usage in semiconductor manufacturing

Intel is investing in a massive water recycling facility at its plant in Hillsboro, Oregon as part of a corporate goal to return 100 percent of water used in its global manufacturing to communities and watersheds for local use by 2025.

When complete, the huge water recycling plant in Hillsboro, will be able to recycle about 1 billion gallons of water every year – the equivalent of 90,000 Olympic-size swimming pools.

Wednesday, March 28, 2018

Ambarella intros next gen CV2 computer vision processor

Ambarella, which specializes in low-power, HD and Ultra HD video processing semiconductors, announced its next generation CV2 computer vision processor, which will provide up to 20 times the computer vision performance of CV1 in a fully-integrated SoC. Key features of the 10nm CV2 Computer Vision SoC:

  • CVflow processor with CNN/deep learning support
  • 4Kp60/8-Megapixel AVC and HEVC encoding with multi-stream support
  • Multi-sensor support for 3-channel electronic mirror and 4-channel AVM systems, multi-channel stereo sensing systems (up to 4 stereo pairs), and multi-imager IP cameras
  • Quad-core 1.2-GHz ARM™ Cortex A53 with NEON DSP extensions and FPU
  • Advanced security features, including OTP for secure boot, TrustZone and IO virtualization
  • Real-time hardware-accelerated 360-degree de-warping and Lens Distortion Correction (LDC) engine

Ambarella also demonstrated a fully autonomous EVA (Embedded Vehicle Autonomy) vehicle on Silicon Valley roads.

Ambarella's autonomous car leverages the company's embedded computer vision processors. The company said its EVA’s high-resolution stereovision cameras deliver the 360-degree short and long distance viewing capability required for advanced perception and precise self-location. EVA includes sensor fusion of the vision information with Radar and map data to provide the information necessary for path planning and merging maneuvers without the need for additional LiDAR systems.

“High resolution 8-Megapixel stereovision combined with superior perception in challenging lighting conditions allows EVA to “see” its surroundings with much higher reliability than was previously possible,” said Professor Alberto Broggi, General Manager of Ambarella Italy. “Moving to an implementation based on dedicated Ambarella CVflow processors brings us much closer to making self-driving cars a practical reality.”

Wednesday, March 21, 2018

Samsung posts specs on its 10nm Exynos 7 Series 9610

Samsung Electronics Co. posted key specifications on its latest application processor (AP), the Exynos 7 Series 9610, for high-end smartphones.

The Exynos 9610 is built on Samsung’s 10-nanometer (nm) FinFET process. The CPU is comprised of four Cortex-A73 cores running at 2.3 gigahertz (GHz), and four 1.6GHz Cortex-A53 cores to load apps quickly and run multiple tasks simultaneously.

The GPU is a second-generation Bifrost-based ARM Mali-G72.

There is an embedded Cortex-M4F-based low-power sensor hub, which efficiently manages the sensors in real-time without waking the main processor.

The embedded all-network LTE modem supports Cat.12 3CA (carrier aggregation) at 600 Mbps for downlink and Cat.13 2CA at 150Mbps for uplink.

The processor also features 802.11ac 2x2 MIMO Wi-Fi, faster and longer range Bluetooth 5.0, and FM for radio. In addition, for global location positioning coverage, it embeds a 4-mode Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS) receiver that includes GPS (Global Positioning System), GLONASS, BeiDou and Galileo.

The Exynos 7 Series 9610 is expected to be mass produced in the second half of this year.

Monday, March 12, 2018

Trump blocks Broadcom's proposed takeover of Qualcomm

President Trump signed an executive order prohibiting Broadcom from acquiring Qualcomm or proceeding with any substantially equivalent merger, acquisition, or takeover of the firm whether effected directly or indirectly.

The order cited "credible evidence" that Broadcom, along with its partners, subsidiaries, or affiliates, impairs the national security of the United States.

Trump said he was taking this action upon review of a recommendation from the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States.

Broadcom issued a statement saying it was reviewing the order.

Qualcomm issued a statement saying all of Broadcom’s director nominees are also disqualified from standing for election as directors of Qualcomm. 'the company will reconvene its 2018 Annual Meeting of Stockholders on the earliest possible date. Stockholders of record on January 8, 2018 will be entitled to vote at the meeting.

Broadcom’s Terabit Monterey Chip extends Ethernet to LTE and 5G Radios

Broadcom introduced a terabit-class Ethernet switching chip designed for high-capacity cellular fronthaul networks.

The Broadcom Monterey Ethernet switch (BCM56670) targets Ethernet-based 5G radios and while also supporting existing CPRI-based radios.

It supports the IEEE’s new 802.1CM (Time-Sensitive Networking for Fronthaul) standard, which provides an Ethernet synchronization solution, CPRI-to-Ethernet bridging, and nanosecond-scale jitter and delay control.

IEEE 802.1CM specifies how to carry cellular radio traffic over Ethernet, It relies on pre-emption, Synchronous Ethernet, and the 1588 Precision Timing specification.

Broadcom said its Monterey silicon offers an order-of-magnitude increase in synchronization accuracy by moving time stampers from Ethernet MAC to SerDes I/O, exceeding 3GPP, IEEE, and ITU-T specifications for 4G & 5G networks.

Monterey Ethernet switch key attributes:

  • Transports CPRI across standard Ethernet
  • Enables cellular-system designers to leverage the merchant-silicon-based Ethernet ecosystem
  • Connects directly to new Ethernet-based radios and installed CPRI-based radios
  • Terabit-class capacity to meet the 10x increase in capacity needed by 5G networks
  • Serves as a critical component in building mobile-edge computing platforms
  • Hardware support for key 5G requirements, including nanosecond-scale synchronization

“We are very pleased to announce another ground-breaking solution that addresses fundamental problems and opens a new, major market for our switching products,” said Ram Velaga, vice present and general manager, Switch Products at Broadcom. “The Monterey Ethernet switch is an excellent example of Broadcom’s deep commitment to 5G innovation and strategic R&D investment.”
Sampling is underway.

Thursday, March 8, 2018

Microsemi's DIGI-G5 powers Terabit OTN switching cards

Microsemi introduced its DIGI-G5 Optical Transport Network (OTN) processor for terabit capacity OTN switching cards.

The company said this newest generation in its DIGI franchise enables packet-optical transport platforms to triple in capacity while slashing power consumption by 50 percent per port.

DIGI-G5 delivers 1.2 terabits per second (Tbps) of combined OTN and client interfaces and is first to market with newly standardized 25 Gigabit Ethernet (GE), 50GE, 200GE, 400GE, Flexible OTN (FlexO) and Flexible Ethernet (FlexE) with integrated security engine enabling flexible encrypted optical connections.

Transporting Ethernet, storage, intellectual property (IP)/ multiprotocol label switching (MPLS) and 4G/5G Common Public Radio Interface (CPRI)/eCPRI services over 100G OTN switched connections has proven to be the most fiber, power and cost-efficient deployment solution for moving bits in today's metro and long-haul networks.

“Our DIGI OTN processor portfolio has been instrumental in transforming service provider networks to mass deploy 100G OTN switched networks,” said Babak Samimi, vice president and business unit manager for Microsemi's Communications Business Unit. “Our DIGI-G5 breaks new ground by enabling the industry’s transition to new OTN 3.0 architectures at terabit scalability by delivering three times the port density while lowering power consumption by 50 percent per port.”

DIGI-G5 highlights

  • Total interface bandwidth of up to 1.2Tbps
  • Comprehensive Ethernet support: 10GE, 25GE, 50GE, 100GE, 200GE, 400GE and the new OIF FlexE specification
  • New OTN 3.0 rates, enabling flexible (FlexO) and fractional 100G+ (OTUCn, OTUCn-m) transmission
  • 56G PAM-4 Serializer/Deserializer (SerDes) allows direct connection to QSFP-DD, OSFP and coherent digital signal processors (DSPs)
  • Integrated packet test set enables remote troubleshooting and debug, driving down capital and operating expenditures
  • Integrated security engine enabling end-to-end AES-256 based encryption and authentication
  • Integrated G.HAO bandwidth-on-demand processing for OTN switching networks
  • Innovative DIGI-Mesh-Connect architecture which enables compact, pay-as-you-grow OTN switching at lowest cost and power by eliminating the need for a centralized switch fabric device.
  • Sampling is expected in Q2



Wednesday, March 7, 2018

Broadcom's Jericho2 switch-routing chip boasts 10 Tbps capacity

Broadcom announced commercial availability of its Jericho2 and FE9600 chips, the next generation of its StrataDNX family of system-on-chip (SoC) Switch-Routers.

The Jericho2 silicon boasts 10 Terabits per second of Switch-Router performance and is designed for high-density, industry standard 400GbE, 200GbE, and 100GbE interfaces. Key features include the company's "Elastic Pipe" packet processing, along with large-scale buffering with integrated High Bandwidth Memory (HBM).

The new device is shipping within 24 months from its predecessor Jericho+., Jericho2 delivers 5X higher bandwidth at 70% lower power per gigabit.

In addition to Jericho2, Broadcom is shipping FE9600, the new fabric switch device with 192 links of the industry's best performing and longest-reach 50G PAM-4 SerDes. This device offers 9.6 Terabits per second fabric capacity, a delivers 50% reduction in power per gigabit compared to its predecessor FE3600.

“The Jericho franchise is the industry’s most innovative and scalable silicon used today in various Switch-Routers by leading carriers,” said Ram Velaga, Broadcom senior vice president and general manager, Switch Products. “I am thrilled with the 5X increase in performance Jericho2 was able to achieve over a single generation. Jericho2 will accelerate the transition of carrier-grade networks to merchant silicon-based systems with best-in-class cost/performance.”

Wednesday, February 21, 2018

Broadcom trims its offer for Qualcomm to $79 per share

Broadcom trimmed its offer to acquire Qualcomm from $82 to $79 per share, but said it is still committed to pursuing the deal. The offer consists of $57 in cash and $22 in Broadcom shares.

The decision to cut the price follows Qualcomm's decision to increase its offer to acquire NXP Semiconductor from $110 to $127.50 per share.

Broadcom's proposed merger agreement otherwise remains unchanged, including the $8 billion regulatory reverse termination fee and 6% per annum (net of dividends) ticking fee accruing from and after the 12-month anniversary of the date of the merger agreement.

Tuesday, February 20, 2018

Qualcomm raises its bid for NXP to $127.50 per share in cash

Qualcomm increased its bid to acquires all outstanding shares of NXP Semiconductors to $127.50 per share in cash.

The previous price was $110.

Qualcomm also announced binding agreements with nine NXP stockholders who collectively own more than 28% of NXP’s outstanding shares (excluding additional economic interests through derivatives) to tender their shares at $127.50 per share.  These stockholders include funds affiliated with Elliott Advisors (UK) Limited and Soroban Capital Partners LP.

“Qualcomm’s leading SoC capabilities and technology roadmap, coupled with NXP’s differentiated position in Automotive, Security and IoT, offers a compelling value proposition.  We remain highly confident in our fiscal 2019 Non-GAAP EPS target of $6.75-$7.50, which includes $1.50 per share accretion from the acquisition of NXP.  With only one regulatory approval remaining, we are working hard to complete this transaction expeditiously.  Our integration planning is on track and we expect to realize the full benefits of this transaction for our customers, employees and stockholders,” stated Steve Mollenkopf, Chief Executive Officer of Qualcomm.


Monday, February 19, 2018

Elliott insists fair value for NXP is $135 per share

Elliott Advisors (UK), which holds an approximate 7.2% economic interest in NXP Semiconductors, is insisting that the take-out value for Qualcomm to acquire NXP should be higher than $135 per NXP share.

Elliot published a presentation in which it argues:

  • NXP is currently one of the most attractive companies in the semiconductor sector
  • NXP has a track record of consistent outperformance versus market expectations over the past year 
  • NXP top-line growth came in above consensus expectations in each of the past four quarters with growth in 2017 Q4 of 16.0% outpacing consensus by 5.8 percentage points;
  • NXP's performance has been driven by impressive results of “Core NXP” (i.e., the Automotive and Secure Connected Devices segments contributing approximately 69%2 of NXP total revenues)
  • In 2017 H2, NXP’s revenue growth was higher than the median growth for its peers, signaling NXP’s potential and giving credibility to consensus expectation that the company should grow faster than peers at 5.3% CAGR (1.5 percentage points ahead of the median for NXP’s peers);
  • NXP is uniquely placed to radically enhance Qualcomm's long-term strategy

http://www.fairvaluefornxp.com/


Broadcom sweetens its bid for Qualcomm


Broadcom boosted its unsolicited bid to acquire Qualcomm to $121 billion, or $82 per share, consisting of $60.00 in cash and the remainder in Broadcom shares. Broadcom described the bid as its "best and final offer", saying that it is prepared to pay to Qualcomm "a significant "reverse termination fee" in an amount appropriate for a transaction of this size in the unlikely event we are unable to obtain required regulatory approvals." Several conditions...

Elliott comments on Qualcomm's extended tender for NXP


Elliott Advisors (UK) published an advisory letter to investment funds that now collectively hold an increased economic interest in NXP Semiconductors N.V. of approximately 6.6%. The advisory argues that that NXP is of significant strategic importance to QUALCOMM Incorporated (“Qualcomm”) and that such a transaction will deliver substantial value to Qualcomm shareholders at prices meaningfully higher than Elliott’s own assessment of standalone intrinsic...

Acquisition still not done - Qualcomm extends cash tender offer for NXP shares


Qualcomm extended the offering period of its previously announced cash tender offer to purchase all of the outstanding common shares of NXP Semiconductors N.V. (NASDAQ: NXPI). The tender offer is now scheduled to expire at 5:00 p.m., New York City time, on February 9, 2018, unless extended or earlier terminated, in either case pursuant to the terms of the Purchase Agreement. American Stock Transfer & Trust Company, the depositary for the tender...

Elliott Advisors says Qualcomm's bid for NXP is too low


Elliott Advisors (UK), which advises funds that collectively hold an economic interest in NXP Semiconductors of approximately 6%, published an open letter stating that Qualcomm's offer to acquire the company is too low. Elliot believes NXP is worth $135 per share on an intrinsic standalone basis – far above the $110 offered by Qualcomm. Elliott states Qualcomm’s offer of $110 per share is acting as "a ceiling on NXP’s valuation", noting that NXP’s...


Wednesday, February 7, 2018

Intel intros Xeon D-2100 for edge

Intel introduced a system-on-chip processor in its Xeon line that is architected to address the needs of edge applications and other data center or network applications.

The new Intel Xeon D-2100 processors include up to 18 “Skylake-server” generation Intel Xeon processor cores and integrated Intel QuickAssist Technology with up to 100 Gbps of built-in cryptography, decryption and encryption acceleration.

Intel said this processor will be supported by system software updates to protect against the Spectre and Meltdown security exploits.

In addition to edge deployments in communications service provider networks, other use cases for the Intel Xeon D-2100 processor include:
  • Storage: The Intel Xeon D-2100 processor is an option for density-optimized, lightweight hyperscale cloud workloads such as dynamic web serving, memory caching, dedicated hosting and warm storage.
  • Content Delivery Networks (CDNs): The processors can bring higher performance to content delivery at the network edge, which is critical to keep latency low for streaming media to viewers and those working in media fields with massive files.
  • Enterprise networks: The processor family also targets entry enterprise SAN and NAS storage, midrange routers, network appliances, security appliances, wireless base stations and embedded midrange IoT usages, among others.
“To seize 5G and new cloud and network opportunities, service providers need to optimize their data center and edge infrastructures to meet the growing demands of bandwidth-hungry end users and their smart and connected devices,” said Sandra Rivera, senior vice president and general manager of the Network Platforms Group at Intel. “The Intel Xeon D-2100 processor allows service providers and enterprises to deliver the maximum amount of compute intelligence at the edge or web tier while expending the least power.”

Tuesday, February 6, 2018

MACOM and ST team to bring GaN on silicon to mainstream RF

MACOM and STMicroelectronics have agreed to develop GaN (Gallium Nitride) on Silicon wafers to be manufactured by ST for MACOM’s use across an array of RF applications.

MACOM said the deal provides it with increased Silicon wafer manufacturing capacity and improved cost structure. This could displace incumbent Silicon LDMOS and accelerate the adoption of GaN on Silicon in mainstream markets. ST and MACOM have been working together for several years to bring GaN on Silicon production up in ST’s CMOS wafer fab. As currently scheduled, sample production from ST is expected to begin in 2018.

“This agreement punctuates our long journey of leading the RF industry’s conversion to GaN on Silicon technology. To date, MACOM has refined and proven the merits of GaN on Silicon using rather modest compound semiconductor factories, replicating and even exceeding the RF performance and reliability of expensive GaN on SiC alternative technology,” said John Croteau, President and CEO, MACOM. “We expect this collaboration with ST to bring those GaN innovations to bear in a Silicon supply chain that can ultimately service the most demanding customers and applications.”

“ST’s scale and operational excellence in Silicon wafer manufacturing aims to unlock the potential to drive new RF power applications for MACOM and ST as it delivers the economic breakthroughs necessary to expand the market for GaN on Silicon,” said Marco Monti, President of the Automotive and Discrete Product Group, STMicroelectronics. “While expanding the opportunities for existing RF applications is appealing, we’re even more excited about using GaN on Silicon in new RF Energy applications, especially in automotive applications, such as plasma ignition for more efficient combustion in conventional engines, and in RF lighting applications, for more efficient and longer-lasting lighting systems."

See also