MANHASSET, N.Y. IBM Corp. has announced it would make available technology and manufacturing services for complementary metal oxide semiconductor (CMOS) image sensors for use in camera-phones, digital still cameras and other consumer products.
IBM (Armonk N.Y.) announced a CMOS image sensor development and manufacturing collaboration with Kodak last September, which included the license of Kodak CMOS image sensor fabrication intellectual property to IBM. Kodak has announced new three- and five-megapixel CMOS image sensors qualified and manufactured for Kodak by IBM's semiconductor plant in Burlington, Vt., that utilize this process.
IBM's foundry offering is based on IBM's 0.18-micron copper CMOS manufacturing process, available at its Burlington facility, that features an integrated design kit, including a four-transistor, 3-micron pixel with a pinned diode, and access to IBM's image sensor circuit library.
According to IBM, the sensors' image quality can be improved through the company's ability to produce sensors with a 2.5-micron copper stack incorporating an on-chip color filter and microlens. The copper stack is approximately 30 percent thinner than standard aluminum-based processes, which IBM said can significantly improve light collection efficiency (quantum efficiency) for improved picture quality in low light.