Heterogeneous 3D Integration

A particular focus in microsystem integration of semiconductor components at Fraunhofer EMFT is heterogeneous 3D integration. Fraunhofer EMFT has an extensive long-term experience in research and development in the field of heterogeneous 3D system integration. This technology, which is protected by numerous Fraunhofer EMFT patents, is of central interest for linking CMOS-compatible electronics with MEMS-based sensors, among other things. In addition, sensors are read out, controlled and networked into Internet of Things (IoT) systems using standardized interfaces.

3D Integration with Through-Silicon-Vias (TSV)
© Fraunhofer EMFT
3D Integration with Through-Silicon-Vias (TSV)

The global trend towards IoT and smart sensor systems makes heterogeneous 3D integration a key technology, but also brings challenges for the corresponding process technologies, such as aligned die-to-wafer stacking and wafer bonding: The immense competitive pressure in IoT applications demands ever smaller, but at the same time more powerful and robust systems.

To meet these requirements, Fraunhofer EMFT signed a licensing agreement with XPERI Corp. in September 2016 and included ZiBond® and DBI® (Direct Bond Interconnect), two of the most advanced 3D integration technologies, in its portfolio of services.

Both processes can be carried out at comparatively low temperatures of around 200 °C, which has a positive effect on component reliability and service life. In DBI® technology, the components are joined both mechanically and electrically after special pretreatment of the copper and oxide surfaces used. Since this eliminates the time-consuming process of through-hole plating of chips, the systems can be manufactured more cost-effectively - a basic prerequisite for accessing mass markets such as consumer electronics. Another advantage is that the "pitches" (structure width and spacing) between the interconnections are only 2 μm in the best case. This enables highly integrated systems-on-chips with enormous performance. This is of great interest for high-performance applications such as processors. An important trend in this area is, for example, so-called hybrid memory cubes - i.e. memory and processor components integrated in a 3DIC stack. 

These competences in the area of heterogeneous 3D integration are available at Fraunhofer EMFT for your application topics. We look forward to hearing from you!

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Competence Field: Thin Silicon


Strategic Research Topic: Microelectronics for Quantum Technologies


Technology Offering: Microelectronics and Micro System Technology

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