Posted: January 20, 2009

AIXTRON and Ovonyx Partner to Develop Deposition Technology for Advanced Phase-Change Memory

(Nanowerk News) AIXTRON AG and Ovonyx, Inc. today announced an agreement to cooperate on the qualification of Atomic Vapor Deposition (AVD) process technology to further advance scaling of next-generation phase change memory (“PCM”) products. As FLASH and DRAM both encounter increasing scaling challenges in the face of shrinking chip geometries - PCM is widely considered a practical alternative for future commercial, high-volume semiconductor memory.
“AIXTRON’s leading market position in thin-film deposition equipment for the semiconductor industry provides an excellent platform for competitive development of new phase change material by AVD technique for next-generation, high-density confined cell PCM device structures,” said Tyler Lowrey, President and Chief Executive Officer of Ovonyx. “We look forward to working with AIXTRON to develop conformal deposition processes that will further enhance the commercialization of PCM products by worldwide chipmakers.”
“PCM is on the verge of commercial adoption using conventional sputter Physical Vapor Deposition (PVD) techniques, however, it is clear that subsequent generation PCM cells would significantly benefit from Atomic Vapor Deposition of phase change materials to further increase scalability and accelerate cost reductions,” said Dr. Bernd Schulte, Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer of AIXTRON AG. “We believe that, working with Ovonyx, we can accelerate commercialization of AVD phase change material deposition into high volume production and offer chip manufacturers higher productivity and low cost of ownership solution.”
About Phase Change Memory Technology
Ovonyx and its largest shareholder, Energy Conversion Devices, invented and pioneered the development of phase change memory (“PCM”) technology, thereby gaining a fundamental understanding of PCM operation, including PCM devices, materials, processing, design, modelling, and performance. Ovonyx PCM technology uses a reversible phase-change memory process that provides for high performance, dense, array-addressed semiconductor memory technology that can be used as cost effective Flash and DRAM device replacements, as well as in embedded applications such as microcontrollers and reconfigurable MOS logic.
About Ovonyx
Ovonyx was formed with the charter to commercialize its proprietary phase-change semiconductor memory technology originally invented at Energy Conversion Devices, Inc. Ovonyx nonvolatile PCM technology offers significantly faster write and erase speeds through its capability for byte-write in either direction (avoiding the need to erase a block to write a bit), higher cycling endurance, and better scaling performance with new generations of photolithography than conventional Flash or DRAM memory. Relative to DRAM, PCM eliminates the refresh power by retaining its memory without power. PCM also has the advantage of a simple fabrication process that allows the design of semiconductor chips with embedded nonvolatile memory using only a few additional mask steps. Ovonyx is pursuing commercialization of its array-addressed memory systems through licenses and joint development programs with semiconductor manufacturers including BAE Systems, Intel Corporation, ST Microelectronics, Elpida Memory, Samsung Electronics, Qimonda AG, and Hynix Semiconductor Inc. For more information, please visit
Source: Aixtron (press release)
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