Design Con 2015
Breaking News
Blog

Why Infineonís 200mm Fabs Matter

Upgraded fab is a harbinger of smart factory
NO RATINGS
Page 1 / 13 Next >
View Comments: Newest First | Oldest First | Threaded View
HS_SemiPro
User Rank
CEO
tsmc makes most money of 8inch and 6inch FABs
HS_SemiPro   10/17/2014 1:46:26 AM
NO RATINGS
How many 8" fabs tsmc have? they make lot of money from these 6 and 8 inch fabs, infact I guarantee that most people around the world who have bought  electronics recently have a chip made in 8" tsmc fabs,

junko.yoshida
User Rank
Blogger
IBM 200mm fab
junko.yoshida   10/16/2014 2:23:36 PM
NO RATINGS
This just in from one of the EE Times readers.

There was a story publised late Sept. by Burlington Free Press, which talks about IBM's 200mm fab in Burlington. According to the story, the fab is full and there is significant IBM-built silicon from this fab in all major cellphones today.

Very interesting, indeed.

junko.yoshida
User Rank
Blogger
Re: 200mm fabs
junko.yoshida   10/16/2014 2:21:00 PM
NO RATINGS
@TonyTib, I think you are right about the wafer carriers not needing to be closed. That was how it was explained to us when we visited the fab.  And yes, I think you are also spot on with your remarks on #2, and #3.

TonyTib
User Rank
CEO
Re: 200mm fabs
TonyTib   10/16/2014 2:06:04 PM
NO RATINGS
Here are a couple guesses:

1.  If the whole Fab is truly class 1, maybe the wafer carriers do not need to be closed (is a SMIF pod higher than class 1?)

2.  I believe the size of power chips (MOSFETs) is much greater than most other analog chips, that's why the are the first to go to 300mm

3.  200mm wafers will be around for a long time, because the smaller wafers makes more sense for a company that is making a huge variety of products that have small die sizes - basically, the opposite of Intel and memory companies.

junko.yoshida
User Rank
Blogger
Re: 200mm fabs
junko.yoshida   10/16/2014 9:20:24 AM
NO RATINGS
Hi, Violoncelles. Thanks for your comments. Obviously, you are far more experienced with the ins and outs of fabs. Although I didn't notice any "strange" noise you mentioned, it doesn't mean it didn't exist. I probably didn't hear it and didn't know what to pay attention to.

That said, yes, I was surprised to see Infineon's "open carriers." I was actually even more surprised that Infineon actually let a group of journalists (although a group of a few people at a time) inside the fab and let us walk around.

We often hear about the concept of "smart factories." It was good to see it work at first hand. Clearly, a lot of thoughts were put into the upgrade work Infineon did for this 200mm fab in Dresden.

Violoncelles
User Rank
Rookie
Re: 200mm fabs
Violoncelles   10/16/2014 3:11:45 AM
NO RATINGS
Hi Junko ,

When visiting the clean room , have you heard the strange noise of wafers constantly moving in their carriers while on these elevated tracks ?  The move of wafers in a 300 mm is much smoother and avoid the vibrations of wafers . Also when a lot is coming out of an etch tool , there are still gases that can affect other lots if the lot is stored immediately in a WIP stocker. The fix was to to let the lot degas before storing it in the WIP stocker. Infineon's choice when the Fab was built was to use these open carriers without a box instead of the SMIF pods. Personnaly , I think that the initial choices of Infineon when building this Fab was questionable  (open boxes instead of SMIF) . But when I read your paper , I would say that they must have done a good job to recover from the initial questionnable choice.

junko.yoshida
User Rank
Blogger
Re: 200mm fabs
junko.yoshida   10/15/2014 7:39:27 PM
NO RATINGS
Thanks for chiming in. Call me naive -- reporters are always too obsessed with the newest and latest thing. But when it comes to chip for analog/RF applicaitons, yes, absolutely, I understand that 200mm fabs are being used. 

In case of Infineon's Dresden fabs, my understanding is that the German company is moving its power semiconductor produciton to its 300mm fab, also in Dresden over time. Infineon continues to make automotive MCUs in its own 200mm fabs -- but I suppose it is necessary to do this for now because the produciton lines need to be certified for automotive applications.

The company did say, however, where it makes sense, they will move some of those CMOS chip productions to foundries. 

truekop
User Rank
Rookie
Re: 200mm fabs
truekop   10/15/2014 7:29:13 PM
NO RATINGS
Hi Junko,

I am surprised you had that opinion, Atleast most of IBM/Tower Jazz RF processes are on 200m fabs , I  think the same with TI, Maxim and Analog Devices, Each has a 200m FAB doing bipolar/bicmos technologies. I feel it is counter productive to use a 300mm fab for analog/RF applications primarily because of the difficulty in getting the bipolar (SiGe) processes to port to 12" wafers. That said i am not sure how automated these FABS are when compared to the dresden FAB. Although not sure if that is a critical aspect, i think it is the process flexibility that these 200mm fabs offer that makes a difference. Afterall volumes are not going to be very high to have absolute automation.

junko.yoshida
User Rank
Blogger
200mm fabs
junko.yoshida   10/15/2014 6:34:27 PM
NO RATINGS
Tell us how your 200mm fabs are working out for you. I had an erroneous impression that 200mm fabs are already things of the past, but apparently, they are alive and well. Given their depreciated facility, I wonder how much automation/optimization has been going on, and how Infineon's 200mm fabs in Dresden fares.

Flash Poll
Like Us on Facebook

Datasheets.com Parts Search

185 million searchable parts
(please enter a part number or hit search to begin)
EE Times on Twitter
EE Times Twitter Feed
Top Comments of the Week