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12 January 2017

Carbonics introduces carbon-on-silicon wafers for RF components in 5G wireless

Carbonics Inc of Marina Del Rey, CA, USA has launched its ZEBRA carbon-on-silicon technology for radio frequency (RF) components and devices in wireless, communications, defense and aerospace markets.

Carbonics was spun out from University of California Los Angeles (UCLA) and University of Southern California (USC) in 2014, funded by university-sponsored research from the Center of Excellence for Green Nanotechnologies at UCLA and King Abdulaziz City for Science and Technology Center (KACST), SRC, DARPA, US Air Force and UCLA's California NanoSystems Institute (CNSI) Technology Incubator. The start-up is backed by $5.5m in venture funding from technology investment and development company TAQNIA International. It aims to revolutionize the billion-dollar RF compound semiconductor market by employing carbon plus CMOS on the road to a single 5G wireless chip.

Specifically, Carbonics is focused on developing and commercializing a carbon-on-wafer single chip solution that improves the power consumption and performance of wireless products — including next-generation smartphone and communication devices.

The ZEBRA product is said to be the first available platform solution for realizing next-generation semiconductor device technologies using semiconducting single-walled carbon nanotubes (CNT). By leveraging the one-dimensional (1D) transport properties of thousands of aligned, gate-controllable conduction pathways, linear current densities exceeding that of gallium arsenide (GaAs) pseudomorphic high-electron-mobility transistor (pHEMT) and silicon technologies have been realized.

Carbonics says that ultra-arrayed carbon nanotubes represent the enabling technology necessary for a carbon-on-wafer single-chip solution, and the launch of ZEBRA wafers remains in step with Carbonics' mission to enable design engineers, foundries, integrated device manufacturers (IDMs) and advanced development houses access to the most advanced semiconducting platform for designing next-generation high-speed circuits.

"Carbonics intends to shake up the billion-dollar compound semiconductor market with our superior disruptive carbon technology that is fully CMOS compatible and able to perform in the mmWave spectrum — representing perfect timing for the 5G and Internet of Things (IoT) revolution," says CEO Kos Galatsis.

"Carbonics has achieved a unique milestone in the evolution of carbon electronics," comments Ken Hansen, president & CEO of Semiconductor Research Corporation (SRC). "This is a crucial first step from Carbonics toward high performance, next-generation RF electronics using next-generation nanotechnology for high-performance mmWave RF and CMOS compatibility," he adds. "It's exciting to see the progress from the fundamental material and device research sponsored by SRC and DARPA develop into the launch of a groundbreaking product technology."

The ZEBRA wafer product line includes the ZEBRA BOLT with aligned semiconducting CNT on 15nm SiO2 for back-gated device applications such as sensors and detectors; the ZEBRA DASH with aligned semiconducting CNT on 1500nm for top-gated devices such as memory, switch, logic and RF applications covering L-band to mmWave and 3G, 4G, 4G, WiFi, 802.11ad and WiGig spectrums; and the ZEBRA SPRINT with aligned semiconducting CNT on quartz aimed for RF applications up to 100GHz.

Carbonics also plans to launch its VIPER product line - comprising high-performance RF devices and integrated amplifiers - in 2017, and its STINGRAY product line of RFICs and MMICs - which will include high-performance mmWave low-noise amplifiers (LNA), power amplifiers (PAs), mixers, switches and front-end modules (FEMs) - in 2018.

Tags: carbon nanotube

Visit: www.carbonicsinc.com

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