14 March 2017
Soitec ramping production of 200mm SOI wafers at China manufacturing partner Simgui’s fab
Soitec of Bernin, near Grenoble, France, which makes engineered substrates including silicon-on-insulator (SOI) wafers, says that the ramp up to high-volume production of 200mm SOI wafers - manufactured with its Smart Cut technology - has begun at the manufacturing facility of its China-based silicon-based materials manufacturing partner Shanghai Simgui Technology Co Ltd (a provider of both SOI wafers and epiwafer foundry services), which has been fully qualified by key Soitec customers.
Soitec says that implementation of a partnership model represents a key milestone in managing its worldwide manufacturing capacity to meet market demand for 200mm SOI wafers used in fabricating semiconductors for the growing communications and power device markets.
“Establishing this second source in China allows us to ensure the needed capacity of 200mm SOI wafers from two sites in different regions of the world, with each facility producing exactly the same products from a specifications and quality standpoint,” says Bernard Aspar, executive senior VP of Soitec’s Communication & Power business unit. “Our partnership with Simgui is now running in an efficient way and our customers have been supportive and instrumental in this strategic move, which fully validates Soitec’s technology-transfer expertise and manufacturing strategy,” he adds.
“Simgui has been working on SOI materials for 16 years in China,” notes Simgui’s CEO Jeffrey Wang. “Partnering with Soitec, Simgui is fully ready to support Soitec’s ramp up of 200mm SOI wafers manufactured with the Smart Cut technology at our facility in Shanghai and to help in developing the SOI ecosystem in China.”
The first 200mm SOI wafers produced at Simgui’s manufacturing facility using Soitec’s proprietary Smart Cut technology were qualified by the initial customers at the end of last year. Additional customers are currently in the process of qualifying the wafers.
Producing the wafers in China has been a key objective of Soitec’s and Simgui’s licensing and technology-transfer agreement (signed in May 2014) and validates Smart Cut as a standard process. The wafer production line in China will boost the industrial manufacturing capacity of 200mm SOI wafers in order to meet increasing worldwide usage and also will be a key element in establishing the SOI ecosystem in China, reckons Soitec.
Soitec’s 200mm RF-SOI and Power-SOI products are dedicated to the mobile and automotive markets, respectively. The firm says that, as the leading SOI substrate maker, it has the largest capacity and produces both 200mm and 300mm wafers at multiple fabs in France.
Simgui is exhibiting Soitec’s Smart Cut-based 200mm product line at SEMICON China in Shanghai (14-16 March).