ST Microelectronics and CMP (Circuits Multi Projets) announce that ST’s THELMA MEMS manufacturing process is now available for prototyping to universities, research labs and design companies through the silicon brokerage services provided by CMP.
The THELMA MEMS manufacturing process is used by ST for its industry-leading accelerometers and gyroscopes. ST is releasing this process technology to third parties as a prototyping and foundry service to encourage new developments in motion-sensing applications for consumer, automotive, industrial and healthcare markets.
ST’s long-term success in MEMS sensors has drawn upon Company-developed industry-leading manufacturing processes. The 0.8-micron, surface micro-machining THELMA (Thick Epitaxial Layer for Micro-gyroscopes and Accelerometers) process combines variably thick and thin poly-silicon layers for structures and interconnections, enabling the integration of linear and angular mechanical elements in a single chip, and delivering significant cost and size benefits to customers.
The CMP multi-project wafer service allows organisations to obtain small quantities from a few dozens to a few thousand units of advanced ICs manufactured using the same process technologies as would be used on much higher-volume products. The THELMA process design rules and design kits are now available for universities and microelectronics companies.
The introduction of ST’s MEMS manufacturing process in CMP’s catalogue builds on the successful collaboration that has allowed universities and design firms to access ST’s semiconductor manufacturing processes from the 130nm CMOS, introduced in 2003, up to the 28nm FD-SOI technology, released for prototyping in late 2012, which enables the efficient design of next-generation mobile devices that simultaneously require high performance and low power consumption.
According to Benedetto Vigna, Executive Vice President, General Manager, Analog, MEMS & Sensors Group, ST Microelectronics, the small-scale availability of ST’s industry-leading MEMS process alongside CMOS technologies including the game-changing FD-SOI, complemented with CMP’s advanced service capabilities, offers unprecedented access to state-of-the-art in chip manufacturing for start-ups and R&D labs looking to design intelligent sensor systems.
Bernard Courtois, Director of CMP explains that the ST-CMP partnership will allow CMP customers to move towards complex, embedded systems, addressing greater societal needs as components of the Internet of Things.