25 January 2011

Rubicon produces first 12-Inch sapphire wafers for LED manufacturing

Rubicon Technology Inc of Franklin Park, IL, USA, which makes monocrystalline sapphire substrates and products for the LED, RFIC, blue laser diode and optical industries, has announced the production of 12-inch polished wafers, the largest high-quality sapphire wafer ready for production of LEDs. The firm now offers a complete range of sapphire substrates including 2-, 3- and 4-inch core, and 6-, 8- and 12-inch wafers.

Rubicon says it is is uniquely positioned to deliver the sapphire capacity necessary to support the growing demand for LEDs in the consumer electronics and general lighting industries in products such as light bulbs, large displays, traffic lights, HDTVs, tablets, netbooks, and mobile phones. Rubicon claims to be the only vertically integrated manufacturer of high-quality, large-diameter sapphire wafers in large volumes (with capabilities in crystal growth, high-precision core drilling, wafer slicing, surface lapping, large-diameter polishing and wafer cleaning processes).

“It takes unique technology with advanced processes to make high-quality, large-diameter sapphire at scale,” says president & CEO Raja Parvez. “Rubicon’s ability to affordably produce larger wafers, free of defects, is key to helping industries that make and use LEDs scale to the volumes necessary to support the growth needed in the general lighting and consumer electronics,” he adds.

“The Rubicon team has built a highly specialized end-to-end process to ensure the high quality of our full range of wafer products,” says Parvez. “It is very important to ensure that our customers can depend on us for uniform, particulate-free sapphire wafers as well as flat, stress-free wafers,” he adds. “High-quality sapphire wafers help our customers produce high-quality LED wafers at volumes supporting the LED supply chain.”

Rubicon says that its recent build-out of infrastructure optimizes its ability to make affordable, high-quality, large-diameter sapphire wafers in large volumes for customers worldwide. While its new 135,000ft2 large-diameter crystal growth facility in Batavia, IL (which produced its first boule in early November) leverages the stability and lower cost of valuable resources such as power, the firm’s new plant in Penang, Malaysia leverages the location to further lower costs and bring extensive experience in polishing large-diameter wafers closer to the LED, consumer electronics and general lighting manufacturers in Asia.

The transition to larger-diameter wafers in LED production has already begun, says the firm. Last August, Rubicon said that it had entered into a $71m agreement to provide 6-inch polished substrates to a major LED chip maker. Firms such as Philips Lumileds and Lextar Electronics have recently announced production of LED on 6-inch sapphire wafers.

See related items:

Sapphire maker Rubicon's revenue grows more-than-expected 30% in Q3

Doubling of monthly sapphire wafer demand in 2010 sends 2” price over $30s

Tags: Rubicon Sapphire substrates

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