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Thread: Will Semi Foundries become Nanotech Foundries?

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    Will Semi Foundries become Nanotech Foundries?

    Will semiconductor foundries ever successfully become full nanotech foundries? Foundries such as TSM have tried to branch into mems, solar and lighting with only limited success and will any of the current foundries ever master taking the lessons learned from semi fabrication, which represent a staggering investment in IP, people, equipment and time and either license it or apply it to the numerous areas it can be used? The reasons for not licensing it are numerous in that a semi foundry could lose its competitive edge, but would also gain one in that it would spread its cost over a larger base. In the future might we see whole assemblies comprising semis, mems, sensors, memory combine in a single package delivering unparalleled versatility and value in a single package? Will we ever see complete micro and nanotech robots come out of a single source? AMAT among others produces tooling for a variety of nanotechnology and has like others problems with diversifying their tooling across other areas of nanotechnology. Will semi foundries ever develop their own EDA? The comprehensive micro/nanotech foundry model will offer huge advantages that will speed up the progress of everything. It might take a whole new business structure where a virtual micro/nanotech foundry is actually built as a platform that brings together capital, expertise and tooling into a virtual comprehensive foundry, like Amazon has become a the world's most comprehensive retailer and supply chain. New business structures will come, just as TSM invented the comprehensive semi foundry and Amazon the retail/wholesale/distribution model, by both inventing entirely new platforms and business models. The time is ripe for change and we will see companies/platforms morph businesses in ways most haven't even imagined. If anything, the processes are advancing in new and unexpected ways. One example I see is the tech of the semi/mems industry is changing energy storage in new and unexpected ways. SemiWiki itself has changed things by creating a platform using the net to help individuals, organizations and companies extend their potential and speed of change beyond what was previously possible. The "Great Acceleration" is changing everything from business, social, political and all other structures at an ever accelerating rate by technology changing everything. Comments and thoughts on new business models or platforms in the semi/nanotech sectors solicited and looked forward to.

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    Last edited by Arthur Hanson; 08-24-2018 at 05:14 AM.
     

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    Influencer U235's Avatar
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    I think it depends what we mean by nanotechnology.

    For the "bottom-up" route, I imagine the large chemical companies will dominate: Bayer, Dow, Dupont.

    For the "top-down" route, well microelectronics is already there, or close -- depending on your point of view. Also Spin-Valve read heads etc, quantum well lasers, etc are nanotech to me. The working principle relies on dimensional confinement < 100 nm. Atomic layer deposition must be nanotechology?

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    Quote Originally Posted by U235 View Post
    I think it depends what we mean by nanotechnology.

    For the "bottom-up" route, I imagine the large chemical companies will dominate: Bayer, Dow, Dupont.

    For the "top-down" route, well microelectronics is already there, or close -- depending on your point of view. Also Spin-Valve read heads etc, quantum well lasers, etc are nanotech to me. The working principle relies on dimensional confinement < 100 nm. Atomic layer deposition must be nanotechology?
    Thanks for the answer, an example I was thinking about is like putting a whole lab on a chip in mems form for medical/chemical testing even nuclear that would use such ultra small amounts of material research could be done at a fraction on the cost and danger. This could be also used for testing new process at very low cost once a standard lab or set of labs is put on a chip. Thoughts or comments on this angle appreciated to. I feel this is a very large market that is just starting to be tapped with an almost infinite possibilities. Any additional thoughts and comments appreciated.

    Nano robots are another area to be looked at and would have numerous uses.

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    Last edited by Arthur Hanson; 08-24-2018 at 12:26 PM.
     

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