Elpida Memory Inc., Powertech Technology Inc. (PTI), and United Microelectronics Corporation (UMC), have entered into a 3-way cooperation to advance 3D IC integration technologies for advanced processes including 28nm. This collaboration will reportedly leverage the strengths of Elpida’s DRAM, PTI’s assembly, and UMC’s foundry logic technologies to develop a total 3D IC Logic+DRAM integration solution.

Close integration of DRAM and Logic technologies using TSV technology are expected to deliver the performance required for the ongoing convergence of communication, consumer and computing (3C) applications with mobile and handheld electronics. The collaboration will facilitate the development of a total solution that includes Logic+DRAM interface design, TSV formation, wafer thinning, testing and chip stacking assembly for customers. The resulting technology is expected to increase cost competitiveness, improve logic yield impact, and accelerate entry into the 3D IC market.

According to Takao Adachi, director and CTO, Elpida, the company has successfully develop an 8-gigabit DRAM based on TSV technology. However, they needed a solid partnership with a logic foundry to move forward. The plan is to integrate Elpida’s DRAM technolgy with UMC’s logic foundry technology to provide SoC solutions such as advanced microprocessors. “Our plan now is to speed up development in a way that supports ultimate system solutions that will be made possible by freely joining together all kinds of devices through TSV integration,” he said, adding that moving forward with TSV integration requires less a expensive product technology and a manufacturing process that can handle large-volume production on neutral ground.  “We can accomplish this by working with PTI, which brings advanced assembly technology to our partnership. We believe this 3-way cooperation will allow us to deliver a variety of services using TSV technology and enable customers to build more powerful high-performance systems,”said Adachi.

Mr. Iwata, senior VP and R&D CTO of PTI, said 3D IC integration with TSVs matched the company’s technolgy strategy, which to date has included a stacked package with 16 die or more, and a SiP for Logic customers equipped with WLCSP, flip chip and passive components using wire bonding and SMT technologies. “PTI commits to this collaboration with Elpida and UMC in order to realize high performance from 3D IC integrated devices that are cost effective and contribute to the evolution of the semiconductor industry.” he said.

For their part,in 2009 UMC successfully introduced 40nm high performance IC production, notes S. C. Chien, V.P and head of advanced technology development, adding that 28nm, gate-last high-K/metal gate development will be ready to support customer IP verification by the end of 2010. “Now, with the increasing technology and cost challenges of CMOS scaling, 3D-IC with TSV becomes another viable “More than Moore” option,” said Chien. “As a foundry provider of integrated 3D-IC solutions, we are excited to partner with Elpida and PTI to develop a fully integrated TSV solution suitable for a wide range of applications.”

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