LONDON – MEMS foundry Silex Microsystems AS has said it has licensed its Sil-Via technology for through silicon vias (TSVs) to Nanoshift LLC for use in the early development of complex MEMS products.
"Through this license, MEMS customers can leverage Silex’s extensive experience in MEMS, and capitalize on Nanoshift's highly-skilled design and development teams to more rapidly bring their MEMS products to market," said Peter Himes, vice president of marketing and strategic alliances for Silex Microsystems (Jarfalla, Sweden), in a statement.
"The Silex Sil-Via platform has become the go-to TSV technology in the MEMS industry because it has been proven in many high-volume applications," said Salah Uddin, co-founder of Nanoshift (Emeryville, Calif.), in the same statement.
Some of the TSV-related patents date back to 1980's so there would have to be some differences in the technology and the claims thereof in Silex patents on TSV. I am not familiar with Silex's claims, but I have a hunch it is very process-specific.
I'm wondering about the solidity of SILEX patents on this technology when I see the initial Thales patent on this TSV technology (« Method for producing via-connections in a substrate and substrate equipped with same » - WO 01/09944)...
Sil-Via is a via-first platform for MEMS development which has been in production for over five years. The license to Nanoshift allows them to offer this technology as a basis for prototyping work for their customers, instead of having to engage directly with Silex. Due to the R&D nature of much of MEMS, this type of move allows Silex to reach a much broader audience, and gives Nanoshift the ability to offer advanced packaging options to its customers with a much more seamless handoff back to Silex for production down the road.
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