Semiconductors
Top stories summarized by our editors
8/16/2017

ThinCI of California plans to unveil details about its Graph Streaming Processor for deep-learning applications, which is being taped out, at the Hot Chips conference next week. The startup is partnering with Denso, which is an investor in ThinCI, on development of the Japanese company's Data Flow Processor.

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EE Times
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Denso
8/16/2017

Cohu, a supplier of semiconductor testing equipment, reportedly wants the US Committee on Foreign Investment in the US to block the sale of a competitor, Xcerra, to an investment fund controlled by the Chinese government, citing national security implications, The Wall Street Journal reports. The Chinese fund agreed in April to acquire Xcerra for $580 million.

8/16/2017

Taiwan's Ministry of Science and Technology is budgeting nearly $33 million a year, starting in 2018 and extending over four years, to support academic research and development in edge-based artificial intelligence chips. The government's AI project, proposed by the Taiwan Semiconductor Industry Association, has the backing of Advanced Semiconductor Engineering, Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co., United Microelectronics and other Taiwanese companies involved in the chip business.

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DigiTimes
8/16/2017

University of Michigan researchers report using plasmonic gallium nanoparticle arrays at buried interfaces inside semiconducting layers to improve the photoluminescence efficiency of solid-state lighting. The team simplified the fabrication of such structures, typically made with gold and silver nanoparticles, by applying a gallium-focused ion beam on a gallium arsenide substrate, then growing a GaAs layer atop the nanoparticles and substrate with molecular-beam epitaxy.

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NanotechWeb (U.K.)
8/16/2017

Researchers at Columbia University crafted a single-molecule transistor capable of changing from insulating to conducting while operating at room temperature. The transistor could potentially lead to smaller electronic components, enabling improvements in computing power and data storage.

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New Electronics
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data storage
8/16/2017

The electrostatic discharge, electromigration and electrical overstress issues with FinFETs have been amplified as chip features continue to shrink, bringing into question whether semiconductors with FinFETs have the reliability required for advanced automotive electronics and other safety-critical applications, this analysis notes. "You cannot have an unexplained failure, so all of a sudden reliability becomes a lot more important," says Joao Geada of ANSYS.

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FinFETs
8/15/2017

The San Francisco County Superior Court on Monday granted a preliminary injunction to Western Digital, requiring Toshiba to allow WD employees access to shared databases and to provide engineering wafers and samples of chips jointly fabricated by the companies. "We remain in constructive dialogue with Toshiba and its stakeholders, and continue to seek a solution that is in the best interest of all parties," WD said in a statement.

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Toshiba, Western Digital
8/15/2017

There are thousands of suppliers to the automotive industry which provide high-tech products that are not microchips or electronics systems. Bosch Rexroth is an example -- it offers welding technology, tightening technology, molding and casting technologies, mobile hydraulics, linear motion technology, industrial hydraulics, gear technology, electric drives and controls, and assembly technology.

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High-tech products
8/15/2017

Increasing demand for smartphone components, especially display driver chips, has led to 90% production capacity usage for ChipMOS Technologies, which packages and tests chips for customers. Taiwan's Central News Agency says ChipMOS will start handling 3D sensing components for consumer electronics devices during this quarter, reportedly working with Himax Technologies.

8/15/2017

A research team from the University of Sydney and Singapore's Nanyang Technological University has come up with a method for recharging zinc-air batteries, enabling them to be used instead of lithium-ion batteries in electronic devices. The team used high-performance, low-cost catalysts containing metal oxides with cobalt, iron and nickel instead of iridium oxide and platinum.

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ZDNet