July 9, 2012 — Soitec (Euronext), semiconductor materials developer and producer for the electronics and energy industries, partnered with Chongqing Silian Optoelectronics Science & Technology Co., Ltd. (Silian), materials, devices and systems supplier for the lighting industry, to jointly develop gallium nitride (GaN) template wafers using hydride vapor phase epitaxy (HVPE). The resulting GaN template wafers will reduce the cost of manufacturing light-emitting diodes (LEDs).
The companies’ joint development agreement aims at validating the manufacturability and enabling the commercialization of GaN template wafers using Silian’s sapphire substrates and Soitec’s HVPE technology.
Soitec and Silian plan to begin sampling GaN template wafers this year.
Soitec developed HVPE at its Phoenix Labs, using production-proven silicon epitaxy equipment features and adding its gallium source and delivery system, said Chantal Arena, vice president and general manager of Soitec Phoenix Labs. Soitec developed high growth rate processes that work with its low-cost precursor. According to the company, GaN template wafers fabbed with HVPE are more cost effective than those made via metal organic vapor phase epitaxy (MOVPE).
Silian will adopt Soitec’s HVPE technology, said David Reid, COO of Silian, offering the GaN templates to its sapphire substrate customers. Silian is undergoing extensive sapphire substrate manufacturing expansion activities in China.
LED makers can free up as much as 60% of their MOVPE capacity by adopting HVPE, enabling them to focus on the more custom layers in the light-emitting design of the LED chip, said André-Jacques Auberton-Hervé, president and CEO of Soitec.
Soitec is also exploring the possibility of expanding its cooperation with Silian into the field of LED lighting, leveraging Soitec’s expertise in epitaxial growth.
Chongqing Silian Optoelectronics Science & Technology Co., Ltd (Silian) was founded by China Silian Instrument Group Co., Ltd for the development of LED industry. After the acquisition of the Honeywell sapphire substrate business, Silian has become China’s first enterprise with high quality large diameter sapphire substrate production and R&D capabilities. Silian’s product range covers a full spectrum of the LED supply chain, from world leading large diameter sapphire substrates, packaged LEDs, LED display screens, LED lighting applications and smart lighting system control technology. Based on the core technologies of sapphire substrates, LED lighting and a flexible manufacturing base, Silian is the most complete and the largest semiconductor energy-efficient industrial base in western China. Silian has a strong sales and distribution network, sub-manufacturing plants and R&D centres located in China and North America. For more information, visit: www.silianopto.com
Soitec is an international manufacturing company, a world leader in generating and manufacturing revolutionary semiconductor materials at the frontier of the most exciting energy and electronic challenges. Soitec’s products include substrates for microelectronics (most notably SOI: Silicon-on-Insulator) and concentrator photovoltaic systems (CPV). The company’s core technologies are Smart Cut™, Smart Stacking™ and Concentrix, as well as expertise in epitaxy. Applications include consumer and mobile electronics, microelectronics-driven IT, telecommunications, automotive electronics, lighting products and large-scale solar power plants. Soitec has manufacturing plants and R&D centers in France, Singapore, Germany, and the United States. For more information, visit: www.soitec.com