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IBM, AMD, Infineon, Micron form litho club

Posted: 21 Jul 2005 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:advanced micro devices? nanolithography? semiconductor?

Chip makers IBM Corp., Advanced Micro Devices Inc., Infineon Technologies AG, and Micron Technology Inc. are joining forces with ASML Holding NV and KLA-Tencor Corp. in a $600 million seven-year consortium called INVENT, according to a report.

The consortium, called the International Venture for Nanolithography, is to be hosted by the University of Albany in New York State and would seek ways to develop chips with smaller features and provide a training environment. The effort would include scholarships for women and minorities, the report said.

The four chipmakers are set to contribute $200 million, while other companies involved in the effort are expected to contribute $220 million, the report said.

IBM has long worked with the University of Albany. Other initiatives have included the creation of research centers by International Sematech, by Tokyo Electron Ltd. and by ASML.

In a release issued on Monday (July 19) afternoon, Albany Nanotech confirmed the formation of the consortium and outlined the funding for the project. The New York state government's commitment to INVENT was demonstrated by a $75 million allocation for the University of Albany. This amount builds on the prior commitments to Albany Nanotech of more than $30 million.

All totaled, the University at Albany-SUNY's College of Nanoscale Science and Engineering (CNSE) has secured combined public-private investment of the more that $600 million.

It is projected that more than 500 new opportunities will be created for research, development, engineering and technical support under the various INVENT activities, according to the consortium. More than 5,000 jobs statewide are expected to be retained and created when INVENT is fully implemented, according to Albany Nanotech.

"IBM congratulates New York State for its support of this landmark collaboration of global leaders in semiconductor development and manufacturing," said John Kelly, senior vice president of technology and intellectual property at IBM, in a statement. "This joint investment further establishes Albany Nanotech as a center of excellence in advanced lithography research and an international magnet for investment, jobs, and innovation."

Wilhelm Beinvogl, senior vice president for technology innovation at the memory products business group at Infineon Technologies, agreed. "Understanding the challenges of the next generation of advanced lithography and developing the right tools is very important to the semiconductor industry," he said in a statement. "This partnership is a key effort to develop that expertise and keep Moore's Law on track."

"We all share a common goal of enhancing the success of immersion and extreme ultraviolet (EUV) lithography, two technologies that are vital to our industry," said Craig Sander, corporate vice president of technology development for AMD. "The INVENT alliance is an ideal example of partnering for mutual advantage."

- Peter Clarke

EE Times

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