It looks like it’s all starting to come together. 2010 closed out with promising news for 3D ICs and TSV technology. At SEMI’s Industry Strategy Symposium (ISS) this week in Half Moon Bay, CA, this news was reiterated by industry executives. (Unfortunately, I didn’t attend, but I’ve been reading about it everywhere.) Wide I/O DRAM was identified as the volume driver for 3D TSVs (Ok, we already knew that); Mark Durcan, president and COO of Micron, said the company would begin mass manufacturing of 3D chips in the next 18 months (that’s another one along with Elpida, Samsung and Toshiba); Dan Armbrust, CEO of SEMATECH said 2013 is the benchmark year for volume production of 3D interconnects.
I have to admit that I feel a sense of pride at not being surprised by these announcements, in fact we’ve already written about some of them here on 3D InCites after visiting SEMATECH in November, and then at IEDM and RTI’s event in early December. Having this be the headline news of ISS just means the executives are getting on board with what the technologists have been telling them for quite some time. It’s exciting that the message is getting through and that it puts us that much closer to the goal of commercializing 3D ICs.
But we’ve still got work to do. Everyone agrees that it will take innovation and collaboration across the supply chain, and to that end, in recent months several task forces and interest groups have emerged to make things happen. Many of these groups (GSA 3D EDA Interest Group, SEMI, and SEMATECH) have approached me to help spread the word, using 3D InCites as a vehicle for communicating those messages to our registered members and beyond. I’m thrilled that this community is evolving beyond the traditional news outlet, to become a useful tool for those dedicated to the 3D cause. “Incite” means to inspire and stir up interest. I’m happy to see that this community is living up to its name. – F.v.T.