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Corning and Soitec Group Announces Agreement on Developing High-Performance Silicon-on-Glass Substrates for Flat Panel Mobile Display Market

Published on July 30, 2009 at 2:21 AM

Corning Incorporated (NYSE:GLW) and the Soitec Group (Euronext Paris) today announced an agreement to work together on the development of high-performance silicon-on-glass (SiOG) substrates for the flat panel mobile display market. The two companies will focus their efforts on top-performance backplane substrate technology for organic light-emitting diode (OLED) mobile displays.

Key challenges to broad commercialization of the high-quality, cost-effective displays promised by mobile OLED technology, including backplane electron mobility and uniformity, and lower total system cost, are being addressed by this codevelopment work. In turn, outstanding electrical backplane performance should enable display manufacturers to achieve complex circuit integration and simplified processing.

"We are pleased to be working with Soitec, a leader in silicon-on-insulator (SOI) and silicon film transfer technology for the semiconductor industry," said Dr. Mark A. Newhouse, senior vice president and director, New Business Development, Corning Incorporated. "This co-development work should lead to faster delivery of our SiOG substrates, which can enable the development of high-quality, cost-effective OLED displays," he added.

"This cooperative effort between Corning and Soitec is a natural extension of both companies' core competencies. Together we hope to create low-cost, high-performance substrates for the mobile flat panel market," said André-Jacques Auberton-Hervé, president, the Soitec Group. "In addition to the focus on mobile display substrates, the codevelopment work can explore alternative applications for engineered substrates using glass and semiconductor thin films, which could significantly enlarge our portfolio of applications."

Corning's silicon-on-glass technology, currently in development, is a thin, single-crystal silicon film applied to Corning display glass. This development is expected to produce an engineered substrate with outstanding electrical mobility and material uniformity, upon which electronic circuits can be easily applied by display manufacturers. The first applications for this technology are anticipated to be small- to medium-sized mobile display devices.

Soitec's proprietary Smart Cut technology is used to transfer ultra-thin single crystal layers of wafer substrate material (such as silicon) onto another surface. This proven technique is used to fabricate more than 90 percent of SOI production wafers in the semiconductor industry. Soitec's unique expertise and industrial capabilities, along with its continuous product and process improvements, should be key to accelerating SiOG technology for new market applications.

Corning Incorporated is the world leader in specialty glass and ceramics. Drawing on more than 150 years of materials science and process engineering knowledge, Corning creates and makes keystone components that enable high-technology systems for consumer electronics, mobile emissions control, telecommunications and life sciences. Our products include glass substrates for LCD televisions, computer monitors and laptops; ceramic substrates and filters for mobile emission control systems; optical fiber, cable, hardware & equipment for telecommunications networks; optical biosensors for drug discovery; and other advanced optics and specialty glass solutions for a number of industries including semiconductor, aerospace, defense, astronomy and metrology.

The Soitec Group is the world's leading innovator and provider of the engineered substrate solutions that serve as the foundation for today's most advanced microelectronic products. The group leverages its proprietary Smart Cut technology to engineer new substrate solutions, such as silicon-on-insulator (SOI) wafers, which became the first high-volume application for this proprietary technology. Since then, SOI has emerged as the material platform of the future, enabling the production of higher performing, faster chips that consume less power. Soitec currently produces more than 90 percent of SOI wafers. Headquartered at Bernin in France, with two high-volume production units on site and one in Singapore, Soitec also has offices in the U.S., Japan and Taiwan.

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