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Service kicks off at Fujitsu's new 300mm fab

Posted: 12 Apr 2007 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:300mm wafer fab? 65nm node? Fujitsu foundry service?

Fujitsu Ltd has commenced operation of its second 300mm wafer fab for 65nm chip fabrication. Volume shipments will start in July.

Capacity was cut to between 2,000 and 3,000 wafers a month from the original 10,000 wafers a month due to lower than expected demand. Fujitsu said it currently has about 30 customers and is seeking to expand business with them.

"We are flexible in capacity expansion. If customers' demand increases, we are ready to expand the capacity to meet the demand," said Shigeru Fujii, corporate senior VP and group president of Fujitsu's electronic device business group. A second fab could be expanded to 25,000 wafers a month.

Fujitsu has been expanding its foundry services and has acquired more than 30 customers. They include IDMs and 'fab-lite' companies in Japan and fabless companies in North America and Asia.

Capabilities include mixed signal, embedded memory (flash and 1T-SRAM) and high-speed I/O processes at down to the 65nm node. An RF CMOS process is available up to 90nm and a 65nm version is under development.

For quick prototyping, Fujitsu established a joint venture with Advantest last November, which provides prototyping services for 65- and 45nm chips using Advantest's electron-beam lithography system to directly draw circuit patterns on wafers without using expensive masks.

Return to profitability
At present, ASIC and foundry services account for about 60 percent of Fujitsu's semiconductor sales. Microprocessors and analog devices based on 130nm and older generations process technology account for about 35 percent.

Fujitsu claims the top share of the ASSP market for digital cameras and H.264 encoder for camcorders.

Despite the fab expansion, Fujitsu revised its semiconductor sales forecast downward for the last fiscal year ended in March by 10 percent from around $4.3 billion to about $3.9 billion, mainly due to lower customer orders than originally forecasted.

Fujitsu expects its semiconductor business to end the fiscal year in the red. "My first priority is to get the business into the black this fiscal year," said Fujii. A 300mm fab No. 1, which is fabricating chips using a 90nm process with a capacity of 15,000 wafers a month, is expected to contribute to profitability, Fujitsu said.

- Yoshiko Hara
EE Times

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