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9 May 2017

Kaiam completes acquisition of Compound Photonics fab in UK

Kaiam Corp of Newark, CA, USA – a private company founded in 2009 commercializing hybrid photonic integrated circuit (PIC) technology for pluggable optical transceivers in data-centers – has completed its acquisition of the manufacturing facilities of Compound Photonics Group Ltd (CP) in Newton Aycliffe, UK. The acquisition includes investment by CP into Kaiam to further develop the facility.

The Newton Aycliffe facility will enable Kaiam to significantly increase its manufacturing capacity for silica-on-silicon planar lightwave circuits (PLCs) and 40Gb/s and 100Gb/s transceivers, and adds both electronic and optoelectronic compound semiconductor devices to the firm’s product line. The acquisition brings new space, tooling and an experienced team to complement and expand on Kaiam’s existing large-scale manufacturing facility in Livingston, Scotland, UK. The new facility also allows Kaiam to produce indium phosphide (InP) photonic integrated circuits that will be needed for advanced transceivers in the future. This continues Kaiam’s strategy of vertical integration that began with its acquisition of the PLC fab of Gemfire in Livingston in 2013.

The Newton Aycliffe facility is 300,000ft2 and includes a fully operational wafer fab with 100,000ft2 of cleanroom space for processing, packaging, and testing III-V devices. The factory currently ships gallium arsenide (GaAs) devices and circuits, and has the capability for InP optoelectronics. Originally built as silicon fab for DRAM memory chips, the plant was converted to III-V materials by subsequent acquirers and now has both 3” and 6” lines for III-V devices.

“The Newton Aycliffe facility is a strategic acquisition that gives us both increased manufacturing scale and vertical integration. We already fabricate our MEMS and PLC devices on silicon, and purchase discrete modulated lasers and detectors as sources and receivers,” says CEO Bardia Pezeshki. “However, future transceivers that run at higher speed and use complex modulation formats will require integrated photonic elements that are highly differentiated, and will not be readily available in the market. This new facility will give us this essential PIC capability, positioning us well to meet our customers’ needs for continuously improving speed, cost, power, density, and manufacturing scale,” he adds.

“We welcome Kaiam, an international corporation that has already found success in the UK,” comments Dr Simon Goon, managing director of economic development company Business Durham. “I am pleased that this semiconductor manufacturing capability is to be retained in County Durham, and that it will continue to grow the photonics industry in the UK.”

See related items:

Kaiam expanding UK manufacturing capacity by acquiring Compound Photonics’ facility

Tags: 100G optical modules

Visit:  www.kaiam.com

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