Posted: February 16, 2010

Soitec Announces Volume Production of new Generation of High-Resistivity SOI Substrates for Cellular Phone and Wi-Fi Markets

(Nanowerk News) The Soitec Group, the world's leading supplier of engineered substrates for the microelectronics industry, announced today volume production of its new generation of state-of-the-art high-resistivity (HR) silicon-on-insulator (SOI) substrates to serve the growing cellular phone and Wi-Fi markets. Soitec recently completed qualification at major customers for volume production in response to their rapidly growing demand. Soitec fined-tuned its HR-SOI process to stabilize the base wafer resistivity in order to meet all cellular electrical specifications.
The shift to multi-band, multi-mode radio functionality in today's handsets and the growth of Wi-Fi based-applications is driving a move to SOI-enabled solutions, which can enhance integration and programmability while reducing cost-of-ownership (COO) in RF Front End Modules more effectively than competing technologies. Soitec's Smart Cut technology is used to integrate a high resistivity base wafer enabling low signal absorption below the oxide. This high-resistivity option for SOI wafers enables chip designers to reach unprecedented levels of RF and mixed signal integration, which will free up valuable area for the RF functions by a factor of ten on the board.
"Our HR-SOI capacity is in place to serve the growing cellular market demand," says Paul Boudre, Chief Operating Officer, Soitec. "This new substrate generation enables chip designers to meet their demanding wireless performance requirements - low RF substrate loss, high isolation, high linearity - on very cost-effective silicon."
High-resistivity handle layers can also be combined with advanced SOI technologies that leverage a very thin top layer of silicon. Such wafers are excellent candidates for combining wireless functionality with lower power and higher speed logic on a single chip using a standard SOI CMOS process.
Manufactured in 200mm, Soitec's HR SOI substrates offer > resistivity, available in any custom silicon and box thickness. The company also offers HR SOI substrates in 300mm for the system on chip (SoC) market working at the 90nm node and below.
About the Soitec Group
The Soitec Group is the world's leading innovator and provider of the engineered substrate solutions that serve as the foundation for today's most advanced microelectronic products. The group leverages its proprietary Smart Cut(TM) technology to engineer new substrate solutions, such as silicon-on-insulator (SOI) wafers, which became the first high-volume application for this proprietary technology. Since then, SOI has emerged as the material platform of the future, enabling the production of higher performing, faster chips that consume less power.
Today, Soitec produces more than 80 percent of the world's SOI wafers. Headquartered in Bernin, France, with two high-volume fabs on-site, Soitec has offices throughout the United States, Japan and Taiwan, and a new production site in Singapore.
Three other divisions, Picogiga International, Tracit Technologies and Concentrix Solar, complete the Soitec Group. Picogiga delivers advanced substrates solutions, including III-V epiwafers and gallium nitride (GaN) wafers, to the compound material world for the manufacture of high-frequency electronics and other optoelectronic devices. Tracit, on the other hand, provides thin-film layer transfer technologies used to manufacture advanced substrates for power ICs and Microsystems, as well as generic circuit transfer technology, Smart Stacking for applications such as image sensors and 3D-integration. In December 2009, Soitec acquired 80% of Concentrix Solar, the leading provider of concentrated photovoltaic (CPV) solar systems for the industrial production of energy. With this acquisition, Soitec is entering the fast-growing solar industry; capturing value through the system level. Shares of the Soitec Group are listed on Euronext Paris.
Source: Soitec (press release)
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