CEA-Léti and Fraunhofer Microeletronics Alliance Extend their Cooperation

CEA-Léti and Fraunhofer Microelectronics Alliance (VµE), two of the largest organizations for applied research in the field of micro and nanoelectronics in Europe, have signed an extension of their 2003 cooperation agreement, now including front-end technologies for micro and nanoelectronics.

The document was signed in a ceremony on the occasion of the Annual Conference 2004 of Fraunhofer IISB in Erlangen, Germany, competence center for front-end technologies within the VµE. CEA-Léti was represented by its director Bernard Bar-bier, and VµE by Herbert Reichl, head of the VµE steering committee.

While the initial agreement, which had been signed in September 2003, covered cooperation on wafer level packaging and heterogeneous integration – the so-called “back-end” – the current extension adds “front-end technologies for micro and nanoelectronics, encompassing processes/equipment, simulation, characterization, and new materials”. As a result, the cooperation agreement now includes practically all crucial aspects of semiconductor technology for micro and nanoelectronics, paving the way for a successful European cooperation in an economically but also socially extremely important field of research and development, characterized by harsh inter-national competition.

Thus, joint efforts, exchange, and intensified common R&D by the French and German partners will prove to be beneficial for European research and economy. Big research institutes like CEA-Léti and Fraunhofer VµE are bridging the gap between basic research at universities and the industrial application at the European semicon-ductor companies. Together with other European partners, the goal is to establish and coordinate a powerful and efficient research network on micro and nanoelec-tronics.

Bernard Barbier explains: “It is a step forward in this already very valuable cooperation, reinforcing the German-French links. The complementary expertise of the two organizations will benefit the European industry, especially through the two clusters around the Fraunhofer Microelectronics Alliance in Germany and Grenoble in France, along with building an important contribution to the European Technology Platform on Nanoelectronics.”

Herbert Reichl adds: “New technologies are the base for innovative products. Research and development has to create an attractive infrastructure for product design in Europe. To enhance the efficiency of R&D, a strong cooperation and common strategy of the main European research institutions is necessary. The cooperation of CEA-Léti and Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft is a first important step into this direction.”

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