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Growing interest in Indian semicon — top 10 most read articles

May 24, 2008 Comments off

It is soon going to be a year since the semicon Web site was launched by CIOL. Over the past year, I have noted with delight the growing interest in the Indian semiconductor industry.

Here is a collection of the 10 best articles for my readers. All articles link to those appearing on CIOL.

1. Indian semicon industry: Early steps taken, miles to go!
The Indian semiconductor design industry had a turnover of US $3.2 billion in 2005 with an engineering workforce of around 75,000. It is estimated to reach US $43 billion by 2015 and provide jobs to 780,000 professionals with a CAGR of around 30 percent for this period.

2. Indian semicon special: Increasing brand value for semicon within India
S. Janakiraman, president and CEO –- R&D Services, Mindtree Consulting, and chairman, India Semiconductor Association (ISA), is quite bullish on the advantages of India and the opportunities provided in the Indian semiconductor industry. Here, he speaks on a host of topics, ranging from the outlook for next year, as well as the fab and semiconductor policies, Indian ecosystem, etc.

3. Indian semicon special: Is the timing right for having fabs in India?
It has been some months since the Indian government announced the semiconductor policy. Some fabs are on the way, and lot of CEOs and other industry leaders from leading global semiconductor majors have been visiting India lately.

4. Indian fab guidelines promise exciting times for semicon, electronics
India seeks investments in ecosystem units for LCDs, OLEDs, PDPs, solar cells, photovoltaics, storage devices, advanced micro and nanotech products, etc.

5. Indian semicon policy ground breaking
These comments from Michael R. Splinter, president and CEO, Applied Materials, were enough to indicate how much the Indian semiconductor policy, announced recently by the government of India, has caught the attention of the global semicon majors.

6. Indian ecosystem will not enable faster product development cycles
The economy of scale may also not justify having a wafer fab facility to cater only to the Indian market, says Dr. H.V. Ananda, Synplicity.

7. India should be known for its semicon might
The semiconductor industry is poised for high growth and will make all round progress be in design or manufacturing or consumption. Issues to tackle are the rising costs and not yet conducive infrastructure.

8. ISA-F&S: India growing almost thrice as faster as global semicon
According to India Semiconductor Association (ISA) and Frost & Sullivan (ISA-F&S), India’s 2007 annual growth in semiconductor market is nearly triple the rate at which the global semiconductor market is expanding.

9. India ascends in the embedded value chain
Indian semicon, embedded design industry to grow from $3.25bn in 2005 to $14.42bn in 2010 and $43.07bn in 2015.

10. India rapidly becoming hub for embedded designs worldwide
India design services companies are involved in embedded hardware and software design in the latest embedded market segments such as automotive infotainment, digital security and surveillance.

I’d like to say a very big thanks to all of my readers. I am also working on another semicon special, which should be out next month on CIOL. The semicon special for 2008 — a collection of industry leading articles, will be online middle of next month.

Measuring performance of carbon nanotubes as building blocks for ultra-tiny computer chips of the future

October 15, 2007 Comments off

There is this really great story from IBM Research Labs that I simply have to seed here for my readers.

IBM’s scientists have created a method to measure the performance of carbon nanotubes as building blocks for ultra-tiny computer chips of the future. Of course, you can also read it on IBM Research Lab’s site as well as on CIOL’s semicon site.

IBM scientists have measured the distribution of electrical charges in tubes of carbon that measure less than 2nm in diameter, 50,000 times thinner than a strand of human hair.

This novel technique, which relies on the interactions between electrons and phonons, provides a detailed understanding of the electrical behavior of carbon nanotubes, a material that shows promise as a building block for much smaller, faster and lower power computer chips compared to today’s conventional silicon transistors.

Phonons are the atomic vibrations that occur inside material, and can determine the material’s thermal and electrical conductivity. Electrons carry and produce the current. Both are important features of materials that can be used to carry electrical signals and perform computations.

The interaction between electrons and phonons can release heat and impede electrical flow inside computer chips. By understanding the interaction of electrons and phonons in carbon nanotubes, the researchers have developed a better way to measure their suitability as wires and semiconductors inside of future computer chips.

In order to make carbon nanotubes useful in building logic circuitry, scientists are pushing to demonstrate their high speed, high packing density and low power consumption capabilities as well as the ability to make them viable for potential mass production.

Dr. Phaedon Avouris, IBM Fellow and lead researcher for IBM’s carbon nanotube efforts, said: “The success of nanoelectronics will largely depend on the ability to prepare well characterized and reproducible nano-structures, such as carbon nanotubes. Using this technique, we are now able to see and understand the local electronic behavior of individual carbon nanotubes.”

To date, researchers have been able to build carbon nanotube transistors with superior performance, but have been challenged with reproducibility issues. Carbon nanotubes are sensitive to environmental influences.

For example, their properties can be altered by foreign substances, affecting the flow of electrical current and changing device performance. These interactions are typically local and change the density of electrons in the various devices of an integrated circuit, and even along a single nanotube.

What it takes to win!


My CIOL edit team (L-R): Shiv Shankar, Rashmi, Ambika, Abhigna, Radhika, Sigi, Manu and Usha. Missing: Idhries and Denzil.

My CIOL edit team (L-R): Shiv Shankar, Rashmi, Ambika, Abhigna, Radhika, Sigi, Manu and Usha. Missing: Idhries and Denzil.

Teamwork, teamwork, teamwork! The 3Ds — dedication, devotion and discipline! Backing up each other, looking out for each other, and most importantly, delivering on the roles each team member is specifically picked to do. That’s the secret of ‘what it takes to win.’ And that’s what my team did!

It’s my pleasure to speak about my team of mostly newcomers — Ambika, Usha, Radhika, Rashmi and Shiv Shankar, besides, Sigi and Abhigna, as well as Denzil. This ‘young’ team has pulled off something incredible that people can only dream about. May I also add Idhries, who contributed in his own manner earlier, and should be back to carry on his good work. Manu has just joined us!

This young team pulled off the magnificent accomplishment of launching the new CIOL Web site — which is actually a Web site hosting a whopping 15 sites! All in a matter of less than three months!
What’s more brilliant is some of these team members are not even two months or even a month old. What’s outstanding has been their resolve, determination and dedication to pull off this feat! With minimal supervision!!

Most of these guys have come from a print background. Some or rather most of them have never used a CMS ever before. Most of them have never experienced Web publishing up so close ever.

Nevertheless, when the time came for taking up a challenge, all of them were up for it. Some were scared, some looked hassled, but all were determined. And goodness me, look at what these guys have managed.

I really feel proud to be associated with such a great team. It’s such a young team that makes the feeling all the more wonderful! They know, what it takes to win!

Even the tech team — mainly Mohan, Sanjay and Raghu — left no stone unturned to deliver and answer or help with the endless queries we all had.

I sincerely hope our hard work is rewarded!

One word of caution for my ‘young’ team. Do not get carried away by success. Stiffer challenges lie ahead, so don’t be daunted and face those bravely.

Categories: CIOL, Semiconductors
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