World’s first commercial 200mm VCSEL wafer ships
IQE in Wales has developed the world’s first commercially available 200 mm (8″) epiwafer for vertical cavity surface emitting laser (VCSEL) diodes.
Moving to a 200mm compound semiconductor epiwafer will dramatically reduce the cost of laser for 3D sensors. This will bring in new foundry partnerships, including high volume silicon-based foundries using 200mm equipment. It will also enable the integration of compound semiconductors on silicon, allowing adoption across a wider range of devices and applications.
IQE developed and scaled VCSEL epiwafers from 100mm to 150mm in 2017, which opened up 3D sensing in premium smartphones. Moving to 200mm creates opportunities beyond the smartphone, into a broad range of intelligent connected devices and also enabling applications in the augmented and virtual reality.
“This is a critical milestone and establishes IQE as the global leader in scaling compound semiconductor technology to larger diameters,” said Americo Lemos, Chief Executive Officer of IQE, who replaced founder and long term CEO Drew Nelson in January 2022.
“A key focus area is growing our business by extending our roadmap to 200mm to establish new foundry partnerships. This advancement will expand the market for both Wireless and Photonics applications and service the growing demand for compound semiconductors as macro trends such as 5G and the Metaverse proliferate and capture more value for our technology,” he said.
IQE’s patented VCSEL on Germanium (IQGeVCSEL) technology enables makes possible the integration of photonics devices at 940nm and in the 1300nm range with CMOS technology by using germanium rather than gallium arsenide, and gives a roadmap to 300 mm epiwafers.
The company has also signed a strategic deal with UK startup Porotech to develop and supply 200mm gallium nitride (GaN) wafers for red, green and blue light emitters for miniLED displays..
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