As expected its on now, and not the nikon is the supplier for the fabtool. Its kind of combination from applied, asml and nikon last. As nikon had serious problems with extreme litho its was the reason why intel initially announced different than expected.
No matter who says what, as the leader is in, every other big guy will follow him, so 450 is in place. However i dont think we could see 450 with sub-14nm as litho gets mad, and materials goes crazy. I wonder when 3D chip sets will be in place.
PS- I was being facetious above. It sounds like there has been more progress on 450-mm than I realized. I'm still not convinced that 450 will be in production anytime soon, or that it will ever have mass appeal, even for the handful of companies that can afford it. But time will tell.
more time passed between 300mm and whatevercomesnextmm, than between any two wafer size introductions in history. That's because it was so good at what it sought to do; reduce chip cost. Along the way, we also cut global warming gases per chip and made many other improvements.
I have watched the fortunes of the semiconductor manufacturers improve with wafer size while their support vendors have been on a sort of increasing financial diet. US mask vendors in particular were beggered by playing vendors against one another leaving none with the funding levels for R&D that the semiconductor houses enjoyed. The result was predictable.
In the 150/200mm transition, efficiency and yield improved for the fabs while the tool vendors found themselves selling fewer tools with which to cover their development costs. They learned the lesson.
As long as there is sufficient financial incentive for S/C tool and support vendors to thrive, rather than just survive, then 450mm will happen in a timely fashion. Otherwise vendors will predictably drag their feet until the semiconductor companies come forward to share in the expense of the requisite R&D funding.
Several years ago, a major customer requested us to gear up a fab in advance for the the production of their new device still in design. It was an expensive request with a lot of risk if they did not follow through with the orders. A clever gentleman within our organization struck an agreement where the customer would buy all the required expansion equipment which we would install then build the devices for them at an adjusted price. If the customer had defaulted, we were protected and they were out a significant sum.
Hard investment dollars by the customer(s) is best grease to get things unstuck.
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