Azzuro to license IP for GaN-on-Si technology for LEDs

July 31, 2013 // By Christoph Hammerschmidt
Gallium nitride on silicon is becoming increasingly interesting to LED manufacturers for its promise of cost-effective production. Azzuro Semiconductors AG, a company that pioneered the technology of gallium nitride on silicon substrates (GaN-on-Si), plans to secure itself a piece of the growing LED market: It has launched a business unit dedicated to LEDs made in GaN-on-Si technology. The new business unit’s strategy is to license Azzuro’s IP to LED manufacturers.

According to Azzuro, the LED industry can achieve huge processing cost reductions, massive yield improvements and reduced binning cost by using its GaN-on-Si strain-engineering technology. To this end the company has already used its template wafers successfully to migrate customers quickly and very cost-effectively to GaN-on-Si.

The process of licensing and transferring the Azzuro LED technologies embraces two phases. Starting with Azzuro's template wafers, customers can assess the potential of GaN-on-Si within a few weeks while being assisted by Azzuro experts during the process: On top of Azzuro's templates, customers can grow their LED structures. In addition, Azzuro can supply full LED epiwafers from the project start to support the customer’s move to the easier and higher yielding back-end process for GaN-on-Si.

Subsequently the customer is enabled to migrate LED growth to GaN-on-Si. Experienced Azzuro engineers provide training to customers and help to transfer Azzuro’s growth technology to the customers’ epitaxy reactors. During this phase the customer is enabled to grow 150 or 200 mm GaN-on-Si LED epiwafers using Azzuro’s technology and IP. In addition to the direct migration to large wafer diameters within a few months a higher yielding back-end process and fewer bins are achieved.

Commenting on the LED industry interest towards GaN-on-Si, Alexander Loesing, leader of the new Azzuro LED Technologies business unit, said: “We see very aggressive movers who understand the tremendous advantages from going straight to 200 mm LED epiwafers which can be fed into standard silicon foundries. These players not only save the capital expenditure to upgrade their 2-inch processing to 200 mm but they also can implement a variable cost model right away.”