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23 May 2007


Cree demos 100mm zero-micropipe SiC substrates

Cree Inc of Durham, NC, USA says it has demonstrated zero-micropipe (ZMP), n-type silicon carbide substrates with a diameter of 100mm (4-inch). The firm already sells 76.2mm (3-inch) ZMP n-type 4H-SiC substrates (specified as having zero micropipes per cm² as well as (since September 2005) 100mm n-type 4H-SiC substrates specified as ultra-low micropipe (less than 5 per cm²), low micropipe (less than 15 per cm²) and select micropipe (16-30 per cm²).

Micropipe crystalline defects in SiC can not only decrease the number of usable electronic devices produced per wafer but also affect the performance parameters of each device produced (power-switching devices, LEDs and RF power transistors for wireless communications). These defects have previously been present in nearly all SiC wafers manufactured and sold by commercial substrate vendors, Cree claims.

However, the first commercially available, zero-micropipe SiC substrates (with diameters of 2- and 3-inches) were developed by Intrinsic Semiconductor Corp of Dulles, VI, USA. Cree subsequently acquired Intrinsic in June 2006 and integrated the firm’s ZMP technology into its product line. Together with previous research and development efforts at Cree - partially funded by the US Army and the US Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) – the micropipe density in 100mm SiC substrates has been dramatically reduced. Cree’s latest announcement demonstrates that it is possible to eliminate these defects in large-area wafers too, the firm says.

“We expect that ZMP technology can significantly improve device yields, expand the range of products that can be designed and produced, and enable manufacturing at higher-volume levels than had been possible before ,” says Dr Cengiz Balkas, Cree’s VP and general manager for materials (and former president and CEO of Intrinsic) .

See related items:

Cree’s revenues and profits rebound

Emcore’s dip in fiber-optic revenues compensated by growth in CATV and PVs; wins JPL Mars rover contract

Cree to acquire SiC substrates manufacturer Intrinsic Semiconductor