17 July 2012

Australia’s Griffith University gains AUS$1m grant to develop SiC-onSi chip production processes

Griffith University's Queensland Micro- and Nanotechnology Centre in Brisbane, Australia has been awarded AUS$1m in research funding by the Queensland Government to develop production processes for a silicon carbide (SiC) microchip.

“The superior properties of silicon carbide enable smaller, more efficient, sensitive and robust devices that are able to operate in harsh chemical and temperature environments,” comments professor Sima Dimitrijev, lead researcher of the Semiconductor Microfabrication Program.

“This Griffith University breakthrough has far reaching implications in terms of engaging with major international industry and bringing frontier technologies to Queensland,” believes Queensland Micro- and Nanotechnology Centre’s operations director Alan Iacopi.

The potential of the new platform technology has resulted in a joint development agreement with plasma etch, deposition and thermal processing equipment maker SPTS Technologies Ltd of Newport, Wales, UK, which will develop the thermal process and equipment expertise necessary to commercialize the technology. In May 2011, SPTS and Griffith announced a three-year joint development agreement (JDA) targeting the commercialization of SiC-on-silicon technology, targeting applications in the LED, micro-electro-mechanical systems (MEMS) and power markets.

“Our industry partner, SPTS will help us take the next critical step of making our SiC production processes ready for industry to adopt,” says Iacopi. Ultimately, this will permit the exploration of new market opportunities with the world's largest semiconductor manufacturers, the university believes. The funding boost should also open up opportunities for research students and enable three new research fellows to be appointed.

Tags: SPTS SiC-on-Si chip

Visit: www.griffith.edu.au

Visit: www.spts.com

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