A*STAR and industry partners form S$200M semiconductor R&D joint labs

Four joint laboratories, representing a commitment of S$200m between private and public sectors, were launched today between A*STAR’s Institute of Microelectronics (IME), and its 10 industry partners. The Advanced Semiconductor Joint Labs will develop and advance semiconductor technologies for future electronics markets. The industry partners involved in this international collaboration are: Applied Materials, Dai Nippon Printing, DISCO, KLA-Tencor, Mentor Graphics, Nikon, Panasonic Factory Solutions Asia Pacific, PINK, Tokyo Electron Ltd. and Tokyo Ohka Kogyo.

While expectations are for smart devices to sustain a compact form factor, consumers also expect powerful performance and low power consumption. The challenge for the semiconductor industry is to meet these needs by addressing system and integration scaling in the electronics market. The four joint labs in lithography, wafer level packaging (WLP), metrology and assembly, will provide an integrated platform for semiconductor R&D, starting with patterning, further development of 3D Integrated Circuits (IC), quality control, and finally, the assembly and high-volume manufacturing of chips.

The joint labs build upon the successful model of the IME-Applied Materials Centre of Excellence. Together, the four labs will enable the development of innovative semiconductor technologies and allow partners to undertake solutions-oriented semiconductor R&D and facilitate commercialisation that is earlier, faster and cheaper. This international partnership also bears testament to the industry relevance of IME’s deep research capabilities, and will encourage further development of solutions for global implementation.

Mr Lim Chuan Poh, Chairman of A*STAR, said, “The launch of IME’s Advanced Semiconductor Joint Labs today is an excellent example of public-private partnership under an open innovation framework. I am pleased that A*STAR IME has entered into this strategic partnership with many leading global industry players to capture new growth opportunities for Singapore and the region. The launch of the Advanced Semiconductor Joint Labs reaffirms A*STAR’s deep capabilities and strong infrastructure in the R&D ecosystem to serve the growing needs of the semiconductor industry.”

Professor Dim-Lee Kwong, Executive Director of IME said, “These joint labs further demonstrate our ability to build a global network of partnerships that stretch across the supply chain. These collaborations will encourage semiconductor R&D that is relevant for industry, and provide solutions for a rapidly evolving global electronics market. Through this integrated platform, our partners can leverage A*STAR IME’s technologies and expertise to develop innovative technologies and products to address challenges in the semiconductor industry.”

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