May 20, 2005 – IBM Corp. and Toppan Printing Co. Ltd. have agreed to jointly develop photomasks for next-generation, 45nm semiconductor manufacturing processes. The two companies expect to invest ~US$200 million.
Development work will be conducted at IBM’s plant in Burlington, VT, and evaluated at IBM’s advanced 300mm semiconductor wafer production facility in East Fishkill, NY. Toppan will assign engineers to work with IBM’s mask development team in Burlington.
By combining their respective, developed 65nm photomask manufacturing technologies, the two companies have set a goal of developing 45nm photomasks ready for production around mid-2007, when industry demand is expected to gather momentum.
Toppan plans to transfer the jointly developed manufacturing process from IBM’s Burlington operation to its own plants, and to establish its own production system in order to provide customers with 45nm photomasks for the early stages of commercialization.