Leading foundry, innovative chip designer will also collaborate on breakthrough 3D ICs using wafer stacking approachMILPITAS, Calif. – June 12, 2007
– Chartered Semiconductor Manufacturing (Nasdaq: CHRT and SGX-ST: Chartered), one of the world’s top dedicated foundries, and Tezzaron Semiconductor, a specialist in high-speed memory solutions and three-dimensional (3D) wafer stacking processes, today announced that Chartered is beginning to ramp production of Tezzaron’s unique ultra high-speed memory chips. In addition, the two companies are working on the manufacture of Tezzaron’s groundbreaking 3D devices, and hope to see them become the first 3D ICs to be manufactured in volume.
Chartered is manufacturing Tezzaron’s 3T-iRAM™ family of two-dimensional 72Mb memory devices. These parts use proprietary technology that mimics today’s fastest electronic memory (SRAM) but provides even greater speed and higher reliability while drawing less power. The devices will be packaged with industry-standard interfaces so that equipment suppliers can swap them into their current products with no design changes. Chartered worked closely with Tezzaron to support the development of this product to improve its manufacturability and reduce manufacturing costs. The devices, built on Chartered’s 0.13-micron process, are well-suited for applications such as telecom and datacom equipment.
“Chartered has shown a willingness to work with us and push the envelope on some new approaches that we believe hold great potential for the entire IC industry,” said J.T. Ayers, CEO of Tezzaron. “We are very pleased with the results achieved with our 3T-iRAM family of SRAM replacement devices. Chartered’s capabilities have been instrumental in implementing them with the reliability and cost model we require. We believe 3D technology can directly address the growing interconnect and real estate issue in today’s complex chips, and it’s assuring to have a partner like Chartered to demonstrate its commercial viability in volume production.”
The promise of 3D ICs is the potential to improve performance, density, and error resistance capabilities over traditional two-dimensional methods. With Tezzaron’s FaStack® technology, device circuitry is divided into sections that are built onto separate wafers using standard processing. Chartered enables 3D stacking of these wafers by building hundreds of thousands of Tezzaron’s embedded thru-silicon interconnections, called Super-Contacts™, into the circuitry on each wafer. The wafers are then aligned with a precision of 0.5-micron, bonded, thinned, and diced into individual devices. Unlike many 3D solutions that connect only at the I/O pads, a FaStack chip functions as a single device due to its abundant internal Super-Contacts.
The first products manufactured at Chartered using this approach will be the proven 72Mb memory device, currently in production, which will be double stacked to create a 144Mb SRAM replacement product. The increased density of this product will allow system developers to use fewer components, create simpler designs, reduce cost and power requirements, make testing easier, and still keep pace with the ever-accelerating demand for more computer memory.
“Tezzaron is driving innovative solutions with its memory technologies and unique 3D wafer stacking method, and Chartered is pleased to be Tezzaron’s innovation partner in delivering these solutions to the market. By working closely with Tezzaron, Chartered has been able to develop a reliable manufacturing approach to produce 3D ICs,” said Mike Rekuc, president of the Americas at Chartered. “We look forward to working with Tezzaron to further the development of this type of technology, delivering solutions and more value to the industry as a whole.”
Chartered and Tezzaron will continue to enhance the 3D IC designs and build them into wafers produced by Chartered. Tezzaron plans to offer many types of 3D IC memories in two, three, and even five layers, using their NanoTSV™ (nanoscale thru-silicon via) technology to enable ultra-high capacity devices and chips with built-in repair capabilities.About Chartered
Chartered Semiconductor Manufacturing (NASDAQ: CHRT, SGX-ST: CHARTERED), one of the world’s top dedicated semiconductor foundries, offers leading-edge technologies down to 65 nanometer (nm), enabling today’s system-on-chip designs. The company further serves the needs of customers through its collaborative, joint development approach on a technology roadmap that extends to 32nm. Chartered’s strategy is based on open and comprehensive design enablement solutions, manufacturing enhancement methodologies, and a commitment to flexible sourcing. In Singapore, the company operates a 300mm fabrication facility and four 200mm facilities. Information about Chartered can be found at http://www.charteredsemi.com
Tezzaron® Semiconductor (USA and Singapore) specializes in high-speed memory products, 3D wafer stacking processes, and other innovations that propel the semiconductor industry toward higher performance and greater profitability. The company has produced extremely fast memory prototypes and has demonstrated the world’s first successful wafer-stacked 3D ICs, including stacked microprocessors, stacked DRAM, stacked sensors, and stacked SRAM devices. Information about Tezzaron is available at http://www.tezzaron.com