August 12, 2005 – Japanese consortium Semiconductor Leading Edge Technologies Inc. (Selete) claims that it has developed the best-performing transistor to date for next-generation semiconductors with 45nm linewidths, according to the Nikkei English News. Selete created the prototype using tantalum silicide in the gate electrodes and hafnium oxide in the insulating film.
Amid intensifying global competition to develop 45nm semiconductors, Selete says the transistor has realized the highest electrode mobility of any transistor for 45nm semiconductors tested so far. Going forward, Selete plans to calculate conditions that raise performance even further and transfer the technology to the companies that have invested in it, such as Toshiba Corp. and Renesas Technology Corp.
Intel Corp. had already announced that it will mass-produce 45nm semiconductors from 2H07.
A transistor basically consists of gate electrodes and gate-insulating films. Its performance increases when conditions are created that enable electrodes flowing in the gate electrodes to move more easily.
For the past 30 years, polycrystalline silicon has been used in the gate electrodes and silicon oxide film in the gate-insulating film. But with 45nm linewidths, an insulating film is needed that has higher dielectric constant than silicon oxide film. This also makes it necessary to select a corresponding gate electrode material.