From backlighting TVs to empowering mobile devices and harnessing the sun's energy, compound semiconductor chips are playing an ever-increasing role in modern life. This is set to continue, but who had the biggest breakthroughs? Which pioneering companies from around the globe created the best opportunities for the compound semiconductors industry?
The CS Industry Awards 2014 will recognise success and development along the entire value chain of the compound semiconductor industry from research to completed device, focusing on the people, processes and products that drive the industry forward. The CS Industry Awards will remind us what is good about the industry - the people who drive it with their technical expertise and customer orientated perspectives. Nominations are open to all companies, individuals and organisations within the CS industry and voting will occur through Compound Semiconductor online and print services.
The winners will be presented to at an evening event on March 18th at the CS International Conference, Frankfurt, Germany.
Substrates & Materials Award
Substrates are the manufacturing foundation for compound semiconductor devices and materials are the key to innovation and improvement. The combination of materials used in substrate formation and device manufacturing require an intimate understanding of elements that can be difficult to work with combined with an ability to push the boundaries of what science suggests are the limits. As these are areas of high cost the development of cheaper ways to deal with exotic materials is key to the industry expanding market opportunities. With such material understanding manufacturers are able to improve device performance, yield and cost.
This award is for individuals or companies that have demonstrated a strong material and substrate understanding that has benefited the manufacturing challenges the industry faces in both improving devices and increasing market opportunities.
Compound Semiconductor Manufacturing Award
Compound semiconductor manufacturing has very specific needs due to the complexity of the materials required and the accuracy needed at near atomic scale construction. The tools required in the manufacturing chain therefore have to be of the highest engineering quality with the ability to manufacture at the smallest scales with a near zero error rate. Such complex tools come from awareness of industry challenges and draws on many years of experience to create the tools required.
This award seeks to applaud the ingenuity of the companies and their people who bring together a wide array of skills to develop complex tools that make compound semiconductor manufacturing possible.
Metrology, Test and Measurement Award
With such accuracy and understanding required for successful manufacturing of compound semiconductor products, there is a corresponding need for incredibly detailed accuracy in measurement and test. Much of the manufacturing process is still at such minute dimensions specialist tools are required to be able to verify manufacturing accuracy and efficiency. Materials characterisations tools also require a higher level of functionality and accuracy than in most manufacturing environments. There is a need to understand how materials react with each other at a fundamental level. Manufacturers also need methods.
This award acknowledges companies and individuals who have made contributions in these areas that advances improvements in the ability to observe and react to manufacturing needs within the tight performance parameters required.
Device Design and Packaging Award
As semiconductor devices have continued to diminish in size the packaging has become more important and in many cases is the form factor for the final device. With tighter parameters there has been a need to improve and tighten device designs as there is little room for redundancy in IC designs. At such levels design can be fundamental to heat and energy control in completed devices so the interaction between designer and manufacturers needs to be closer than ever before. Innovation has been just as vital in the packaging end of the process as materials, form and function in packaging is now key to overall device improvement.
This award seeks to highlight the important contribution to manufacturing design and packaging have and had and continue to have in compound semiconductors.
This award seeks to identify the most innovative outcomes from compound semiconductor manufacturing and highlight the products / processes that are deemed to demonstrate the most innovative approaches that push the technical barriers.
R & D Award
When dealing with exotic materials with a goal to create innovative devices, research and development is more than just a part of a company's output. It is the key factor in determining their future success as growth in this sector depends completely on innovation.
This award aims to identify and applaud the people, companies or institutes whose research and development work lead to breakthroughs in compound semiconductor manufacturing.