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21 November 2006


BluGlass scales up GaN deposition to 4-inch substrates

BluGlass Ltd of Sydney, Australia says that it has demonstrated its gallium nitride (GaN) production technology on four-inch substrates, double the diameter (four times the deposition area) of the current two-inch industry standard, it claims, well ahead of expected timelines.

BluGlass was spun off from the III-nitride department of Macquarie University in New South Wales in June 2005 and this September raised $7.7m in an initial public offering. In October it signed an 18 month joint development agreement to work with France's Saint-Gobain Recherche (SGR) on developing specifically engineered substrates.

"BluGlass has already identified considerable savings at the wafer level through our process by demonstrating GaN growth at lower temperatures [500-700°C, rather than over 950°C for current commercial MOCVD techniques],
on cheaper substrates, such as glass," says chief executive officer David Jordan. BluGlass now aims to develop commercial manufacturing equipment in 2007. "The next step in the development of BluGlass' technology will be to
move towards six-inch, eight-inch and eventually even larger wafers which will, in combination with other BluGlass technological advances, dramatically lower the production cost of GaN," he adds.

One application for a cheaper source of GaN is high-efficiency LED lighting. "Now that we are proving our technology on the four-inch system and beyond, we are very confident of being able to open up the market for GaN in general lighting, which has a current global market value of more than $100bn," Jordan reckons.

³There are many other markets for GaN devices including backlighting for computers and TVs, automotive lighting and successors to DVD and CD. Widespread adoption is currently limited by cost, and this is something that
our technology aims to help overcome," says Jordan. "Every price reduction along the way will unveil new applications for GaN."

See related items:

BluGlass closes IPO fully oversubscribed; lodges supplementary prospectus

BluGlass lists at a 42.5% premium to offer price

Saint-Gobain to develop substrates for BluGlass’ GaN-on-glass devices