Tegal Corporation, a leading designer and manufacturer of plasma etch and deposition systems used in the production of integrated circuits and nanotechnology devices, and Sharp Laboratories of America have entered into an agreement to collaborate on a focused joint development program (JDP) to accelerate the adoption and integration of next generation high-K dielectrics.
The JDP builds on Tegal's patented Nano Layer Deposition (NLD) technology for depositing ultra thin layers of new dielectric materials for semiconductor and nanotechnology device production. The program will be centered at the Sharp Laboratories of America (SLA) facility in Camas, Washington and will utilize the Tegal Simplus NLD system already installed there.
"We are very excited about the JDP and the opportunity for Tegal to work cooperatively with Sharp engineers within their own facilities to further refine and deploy production solutions based on Tegal's Simplus NLD technology," said Michael L. Parodi, Tegal's Chairman, President and CEO. "NLD holds the promise of enabling high throughput deposition of critical dielectric layers needed for semiconductor device scaling. The scaling of logic and memory devices requires the continuous thickness reduction of dielectric layers to ensure the required electrical performance of these devices. New conformal deposition technologies like NLD are needed to achieve the aggressive scaling requirements called out in the recently published Semiconductor Industry Association's (SIA) International Technology Roadmap for Semiconductors (2003)."
The Simplus NLD cluster tool is a multi-chamber deposition platform targeted for barrier, copper seed and high-K dielectric applications. The market for highly conformal deposition tools, such as NLD and Atomic Layer Deposition (ALD), is expected to grow from approximately $100 million today to over $1.3 billion by 2008 according to the independent market research firm VLSI Research, Inc. Tegal announced the completion of the acquisition of the Simplus NLD product line in December 2003.