A made-in-India transistor that can make India’s IoT technology a reality

Himanshu

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Dec 3, 2017
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indopacfront.blogspot.com
IIT BOMBAY AND ISRO’S SCL INDIGENOUSLY AUGMENT THEIR 180-NANOMETER TECHNOLOGY FOR VERSATILE AND POWERFUL CHIPS



The transistor, a semiconductor device used to boost or switch electronic signals, is a widely used component in almost every electronic device, big and small. In fact, it is often considered as one of the greatest inventions of the 20th century. As electronic devices become sophisticated, and find new applications, different types of transistors are being designed and developed to suit those applications. Among them is the Bipolar Junction Transistor (BJT), a transistor that uses both electron and hole charge carriers (bipolar) for its operation. It is now touted to play a big role in the Internet of Things (IoT) applications.

But how does this transistor fit in the bigger landscape? Almost every IoT solution needs sensors, which collect data from their surroundings. This data (or signals) could either be digital like the images captured by a camera, or analog as in the case of audio signals. Processing the two types of signals needs a versatile technology platform that can work with mixed signals and result in optimal performance. While the Complementary Metal Oxide Semiconductor (CMOS) transistors handle digital signals, BJTs work with analog signals. Bi-CMOS (short for Bipolar-CMOS) technology combines the two transistor technologies in one chip.

In space and communication related applications, BJTs are used in antennas for communications. It is compatible with CMOS. It can drive long transmission lines to enable communication chips working with signals of very high frequency (250MHz -20GHz). ISRO’s primary interest is to develop such light-weight, energy-efficient, high-frequency chips needed for payloads in satellites and rockets. Conventional frequency amplifiers like gallium arsenide (GaAs) or gallium nitride (GaN) are stand-alone and result in bulkier chips when coupled with CMOS based signal-processing units.

Now, researchers at the Indian Institute of Technology - Bombay (IIT-B), in a collaborative effort with ISRO’s Semi-Conductor Labs (SCL), Chandigarh, have developed a completely indigenous Bipolar Junction Transistor (BJT) that can work with Bi-CMOS. This development was the result of a year long research led by Prof. Udayan Ganguly and Dr. Piyush Bhatt. Prof. Ganguly, an Associate Professor at the Department of Electrical Engineering, IIT-B also the co-Principal Investigator at the Centre of Excellence in Nanoelectronics (CEN) at IIT-B.

“The technology adds High Frequency Circuits to the existing digital CMOS technology. It enables high frequency communications and analog/mixed chips for various applications like IoT and space”, says Prof. Ganguly. “Bi-CMOS technology with integrated BJT based amplifiers reduces form factor, power consumption and cost – all essential for space applications”, he adds.​
Making in India - a strategic move

India has two semiconductor manufacturing organizations - STAR-C (a unit of SITAR by Govt. of India) and the SCL, which is the most advanced fabrication facility in the country, producing high frequency, low power digital CMOS for strategic and national needs. However, international tech giants have largely pioneered cutting-edge semiconductor technologies. These exclusive technologies may be availed through technology transfers -- the process of transferring scientific findings from one organization to another for the purpose of further development and commercialization.

“To have unfettered access to such technologies for national needs, indigenous technology development is a must” remarks Prof. Ganguly, citing the reasons for the need to augment this production technology indigenously. He also points out two important gaps that have stymied indigenous technology development -- the gap in CMOS technology development and manufacturing expertise, and the gap in advanced semiconductor manufacturing.

“While electronics is one of the top research intensive area globally, India has not had a significant stake until the Centres for Excellence in Nanoelectronics (CENs) were seeded at IIT-B and IISc-Bangalore by the Ministry of Electronics”, he says adding that today, these centres draw international talent and are led by professors with first-hand technology development experience. Pointing out the need for fabrication facilities, he adds -- “While the electronics policy of 2017 claims that electronics imports will outstrip oil imports by 2020, the mega-fab creation in India is still under work.”​
In this context, the development of the indigenous BJT is indeed a milestone for the CEN at IIT-B. The technology can, not only severe strategic applications in the areas of space and defense, but also in the development of digital and analog chips. Going forward, these chips can be developed and manufactured by SCL, or can be expanded for other corporate players to enter the business, leveraging SCL capabilities as a pilot line for scale-up.



Enabling the growth of ESDM

In the wake of India’s growing Electronics System Design & Manufacturing (ESDM) sector, and estimates that the Indian electronics' market would grow to be $228 billion in 2020, there is also a need for innovations in circuit design and manufacturing to go beyond the reach of large design houses with connections to giant foundries. “Smaller design teams have access to only standard technologies available commercially”, opines Prof. Ganguly, citing how SCL’s ability to develop custom technologies will add a further edge to demonstrate proof of concept IoT technologies. “This could help develop innovative products for electronic sensing and control in various nationally relevant environments like medical, agriculture, efficient home, public places and factories”, he adds.

In addition, the Centre for Excellence in Nanoelectronics (CEN) -- a collaborative project between IIT-B and IISc, provides a world-class expertise that excels in semiconductor device design, fabrication, modeling and reliability. With the development of BJT, technology development with Indian organizations has reached new levels, surpassing the persistent challenge to interface with Indian manufacturing houses in electronics. “CEN has enabled the group to have excellent in-house ‘hands-on’ expertise in new technology development. In addition, the group has worked with various international research and manufacturing houses to develop key technologies”, says Prof. Ganguly. He further adds that “Every bit of knowledge, technique and idea in our research labs can translate into either commercial or strategic products of the future.”

And what does a success story like this mean for the country’s educational institutes that are aiming to be the best in the world? “Success stories like this percolate through the entire community nationally to serve as examples to emulate”, signs off Prof. Ganguly.​
 

_Anonymous_

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Dec 4, 2017
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IIT BOMBAY AND ISRO’S SCL INDIGENOUSLY AUGMENT THEIR 180-NANOMETER TECHNOLOGY FOR VERSATILE AND POWERFUL CHIPS



The transistor, a semiconductor device used to boost or switch electronic signals, is a widely used component in almost every electronic device, big and small. In fact, it is often considered as one of the greatest inventions of the 20th century. As electronic devices become sophisticated, and find new applications, different types of transistors are being designed and developed to suit those applications. Among them is the Bipolar Junction Transistor (BJT), a transistor that uses both electron and hole charge carriers (bipolar) for its operation. It is now touted to play a big role in the Internet of Things (IoT) applications.

But how does this transistor fit in the bigger landscape? Almost every IoT solution needs sensors, which collect data from their surroundings. This data (or signals) could either be digital like the images captured by a camera, or analog as in the case of audio signals. Processing the two types of signals needs a versatile technology platform that can work with mixed signals and result in optimal performance. While the Complementary Metal Oxide Semiconductor (CMOS) transistors handle digital signals, BJTs work with analog signals. Bi-CMOS (short for Bipolar-CMOS) technology combines the two transistor technologies in one chip.

In space and communication related applications, BJTs are used in antennas for communications. It is compatible with CMOS. It can drive long transmission lines to enable communication chips working with signals of very high frequency (250MHz -20GHz). ISRO’s primary interest is to develop such light-weight, energy-efficient, high-frequency chips needed for payloads in satellites and rockets. Conventional frequency amplifiers like gallium arsenide (GaAs) or gallium nitride (GaN) are stand-alone and result in bulkier chips when coupled with CMOS based signal-processing units.

Now, researchers at the Indian Institute of Technology - Bombay (IIT-B), in a collaborative effort with ISRO’s Semi-Conductor Labs (SCL), Chandigarh, have developed a completely indigenous Bipolar Junction Transistor (BJT) that can work with Bi-CMOS. This development was the result of a year long research led by Prof. Udayan Ganguly and Dr. Piyush Bhatt. Prof. Ganguly, an Associate Professor at the Department of Electrical Engineering, IIT-B also the co-Principal Investigator at the Centre of Excellence in Nanoelectronics (CEN) at IIT-B.

“The technology adds High Frequency Circuits to the existing digital CMOS technology. It enables high frequency communications and analog/mixed chips for various applications like IoT and space”, says Prof. Ganguly. “Bi-CMOS technology with integrated BJT based amplifiers reduces form factor, power consumption and cost – all essential for space applications”, he adds.​
Making in India - a strategic move

India has two semiconductor manufacturing organizations - STAR-C (a unit of SITAR by Govt. of India) and the SCL, which is the most advanced fabrication facility in the country, producing high frequency, low power digital CMOS for strategic and national needs. However, international tech giants have largely pioneered cutting-edge semiconductor technologies. These exclusive technologies may be availed through technology transfers -- the process of transferring scientific findings from one organization to another for the purpose of further development and commercialization.

“To have unfettered access to such technologies for national needs, indigenous technology development is a must” remarks Prof. Ganguly, citing the reasons for the need to augment this production technology indigenously. He also points out two important gaps that have stymied indigenous technology development -- the gap in CMOS technology development and manufacturing expertise, and the gap in advanced semiconductor manufacturing.

“While electronics is one of the top research intensive area globally, India has not had a significant stake until the Centres for Excellence in Nanoelectronics (CENs) were seeded at IIT-B and IISc-Bangalore by the Ministry of Electronics”, he says adding that today, these centres draw international talent and are led by professors with first-hand technology development experience. Pointing out the need for fabrication facilities, he adds -- “While the electronics policy of 2017 claims that electronics imports will outstrip oil imports by 2020, the mega-fab creation in India is still under work.”​
In this context, the development of the indigenous BJT is indeed a milestone for the CEN at IIT-B. The technology can, not only severe strategic applications in the areas of space and defense, but also in the development of digital and analog chips. Going forward, these chips can be developed and manufactured by SCL, or can be expanded for other corporate players to enter the business, leveraging SCL capabilities as a pilot line for scale-up.



Enabling the growth of ESDM

In the wake of India’s growing Electronics System Design & Manufacturing (ESDM) sector, and estimates that the Indian electronics' market would grow to be $228 billion in 2020, there is also a need for innovations in circuit design and manufacturing to go beyond the reach of large design houses with connections to giant foundries. “Smaller design teams have access to only standard technologies available commercially”, opines Prof. Ganguly, citing how SCL’s ability to develop custom technologies will add a further edge to demonstrate proof of concept IoT technologies. “This could help develop innovative products for electronic sensing and control in various nationally relevant environments like medical, agriculture, efficient home, public places and factories”, he adds.

In addition, the Centre for Excellence in Nanoelectronics (CEN) -- a collaborative project between IIT-B and IISc, provides a world-class expertise that excels in semiconductor device design, fabrication, modeling and reliability. With the development of BJT, technology development with Indian organizations has reached new levels, surpassing the persistent challenge to interface with Indian manufacturing houses in electronics. “CEN has enabled the group to have excellent in-house ‘hands-on’ expertise in new technology development. In addition, the group has worked with various international research and manufacturing houses to develop key technologies”, says Prof. Ganguly. He further adds that “Every bit of knowledge, technique and idea in our research labs can translate into either commercial or strategic products of the future.”

And what does a success story like this mean for the country’s educational institutes that are aiming to be the best in the world? “Success stories like this percolate through the entire community nationally to serve as examples to emulate”, signs off Prof. Ganguly.​
Any developments on MII plans for wafer fabrication ? Last heard there were 2 consortiums in the race . Both of them were supposed to commence production before 2020.
 
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Shashank

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Dec 4, 2017
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Ban galore
Don't miss bus on new semiconductors



Besides making massive investments into silica-based semiconductor fabrication, China has also been strategically active in the development of non-silica semiconductor materials, including Gallium Nitride (GaN), which is already revolutionising power electronics for cutting-edge aerospace and defence applications in the West and is set for wider use in data centres, electric vehicles and consumer devices. In fact, China's efforts in this arena have already led the US, which currently leads the world in GaN technology, to actively stop Chinese acquisitions of Western firms involved in this space.

India, which let the entire silica-based semiconductor revolution bypass it and is still struggling to get a Silicon Carbide (SiC) foundry off the ground, today has a golden opportunity to not miss the new worldwide wave of GaN semiconductor development.

In this context, reports suggesting that the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY) has decided not to fund a Rs 3,000-crore expansion of an existing engineering-scale GaN foundry at the Indian Institute of Science (IISc), Bengaluru, because of the 'risk' involved in pursuing this new technology, and MeitY's desire to prioritise silica-based fabs to cater to existing civilian electronics requirements, are troubling, to say the least.

GaN's main benefit is that high-electron mobility transistors (HeMT) and devices made from it boast properties such as rapid switching and the ability to operate at very high power levels without any need for cooling. For example, GaN HeMTs can be used to create multi-functional GaN monolithic microwave integrated circuits (MMICs), which can be packaged into more efficient and versatile transmit/receive modules for active electronic scanned array radars and other solid-state electronic warfare equipment.

Moreover, legacy concerns about the reliability of GaN have been overcome by Western defence majors such as Raytheon, who are now reaping the rewards of having assiduously invested in GaN. In recent years, Raytheon has been winning key Pentagon contracts related to electronic warfare such as the 'next generation jammer', due in no small measure to its ownership of a Pentagon-accredited 'trusted foundry' that churns out GaN MMICs. This 'trusted foundry' obviates security risks related to imported GaN wafers and allows Raytheon to fashion custom-made solutions much quicker and cheaper.

Clearly, GaN has already emerged as a semiconductor material of choice for aerospace and defence devices and is no 'blue sky' idea fraught with unmeasurable risk. Especially because the IISc proposal relates to scaling up an existing GaN facility at its Centre for Nanoscience and Engineering (CeNSE), where integrated work related to GaN material growth, MMIC creation, packaging and device fabrication is already underway.

In fact, the far greater risk, given developments not just in the West but in China as well, lies in India falling behind yet again in a crucial arena of strategic electronics development and endangering its security by not funding the IISc proposal due to short-sightedness.

'Trusted foundry'

In the absence of local supply of GaN wafers, India would either have to accept a disadvantage by continuing to develop critical EW equipment using non-GaN material or would have to import wafers from GaN foundries abroad, with attendant security risks and cost penalties. Instead, the IISc proposal allows India to develop its own 'trusted foundry' as it were.

In contrast to the problems India is facing in setting up multi-billion dollar SiC semifabs, the IISc proposal can reach fruition much quicker and has the potential to generate a much bigger return on investment, given that GaN is being increasingly used for civilian applications as well. The IISc plan would also have followed a proven path adopted by China over a decade ago when it started setting up foundries for strategic non-silica semiconductor material in integrated facilities similar to CeNSE.

An example of this would be the creation of a Mercury Cadmium Telluride (HgCdTe) fab at the Shanghai Institute of Technical Physics, which used its integrated development chain to churn out high-quality infrared (IR) sensors for China's military space programme. Importantly, China has now scaled up some of these ventures for mass supply to the commoditised device market. Obviously, China seeks to do the same with GaN as well, that is, use its scale to bring down GaN fabrication costs thereby paving the way for widespread commercial use.

Like China, India also needs to first invest in setting up non-silica based integrated industrial semiconductor facilities for strategic applications with a view to scaling them up in the future. Apart from IISc's GaN foundry, India also urgently needs a HgCdTe fab for making focal point arrays that will go into indigenous Imaging IR missile-seekers. If MeitY is unable to provide the funds for IISc's GaN foundry, the Ministry of Defence should step in to do so, given its strategic importance. After all, the only way to avoid being blindsided by the future is to be a part of it.

@Bali78
 

Bali78

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Dec 26, 2017
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USA
Don't miss bus on new semiconductors



Besides making massive investments into silica-based semiconductor fabrication, China has also been strategically active in the development of non-silica semiconductor materials, including Gallium Nitride (GaN), which is already revolutionising power electronics for cutting-edge aerospace and defence applications in the West and is set for wider use in data centres, electric vehicles and consumer devices. In fact, China's efforts in this arena have already led the US, which currently leads the world in GaN technology, to actively stop Chinese acquisitions of Western firms involved in this space.

India, which let the entire silica-based semiconductor revolution bypass it and is still struggling to get a Silicon Carbide (SiC) foundry off the ground, today has a golden opportunity to not miss the new worldwide wave of GaN semiconductor development.

In this context, reports suggesting that the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY) has decided not to fund a Rs 3,000-crore expansion of an existing engineering-scale GaN foundry at the Indian Institute of Science (IISc), Bengaluru, because of the 'risk' involved in pursuing this new technology, and MeitY's desire to prioritise silica-based fabs to cater to existing civilian electronics requirements, are troubling, to say the least.

GaN's main benefit is that high-electron mobility transistors (HeMT) and devices made from it boast properties such as rapid switching and the ability to operate at very high power levels without any need for cooling. For example, GaN HeMTs can be used to create multi-functional GaN monolithic microwave integrated circuits (MMICs), which can be packaged into more efficient and versatile transmit/receive modules for active electronic scanned array radars and other solid-state electronic warfare equipment.

Moreover, legacy concerns about the reliability of GaN have been overcome by Western defence majors such as Raytheon, who are now reaping the rewards of having assiduously invested in GaN. In recent years, Raytheon has been winning key Pentagon contracts related to electronic warfare such as the 'next generation jammer', due in no small measure to its ownership of a Pentagon-accredited 'trusted foundry' that churns out GaN MMICs. This 'trusted foundry' obviates security risks related to imported GaN wafers and allows Raytheon to fashion custom-made solutions much quicker and cheaper.

Clearly, GaN has already emerged as a semiconductor material of choice for aerospace and defence devices and is no 'blue sky' idea fraught with unmeasurable risk. Especially because the IISc proposal relates to scaling up an existing GaN facility at its Centre for Nanoscience and Engineering (CeNSE), where integrated work related to GaN material growth, MMIC creation, packaging and device fabrication is already underway.

In fact, the far greater risk, given developments not just in the West but in China as well, lies in India falling behind yet again in a crucial arena of strategic electronics development and endangering its security by not funding the IISc proposal due to short-sightedness.

'Trusted foundry'

In the absence of local supply of GaN wafers, India would either have to accept a disadvantage by continuing to develop critical EW equipment using non-GaN material or would have to import wafers from GaN foundries abroad, with attendant security risks and cost penalties. Instead, the IISc proposal allows India to develop its own 'trusted foundry' as it were.

In contrast to the problems India is facing in setting up multi-billion dollar SiC semifabs, the IISc proposal can reach fruition much quicker and has the potential to generate a much bigger return on investment, given that GaN is being increasingly used for civilian applications as well. The IISc plan would also have followed a proven path adopted by China over a decade ago when it started setting up foundries for strategic non-silica semiconductor material in integrated facilities similar to CeNSE.

An example of this would be the creation of a Mercury Cadmium Telluride (HgCdTe) fab at the Shanghai Institute of Technical Physics, which used its integrated development chain to churn out high-quality infrared (IR) sensors for China's military space programme. Importantly, China has now scaled up some of these ventures for mass supply to the commoditised device market. Obviously, China seeks to do the same with GaN as well, that is, use its scale to bring down GaN fabrication costs thereby paving the way for widespread commercial use.

Like China, India also needs to first invest in setting up non-silica based integrated industrial semiconductor facilities for strategic applications with a view to scaling them up in the future. Apart from IISc's GaN foundry, India also urgently needs a HgCdTe fab for making focal point arrays that will go into indigenous Imaging IR missile-seekers. If MeitY is unable to provide the funds for IISc's GaN foundry, the Ministry of Defence should step in to do so, given its strategic importance. After all, the only way to avoid being blindsided by the future is to be a part of it.

@Bali78
Typical sarkari babu attitude!! Just stop anything that is innovative, with some stupid reasons :mad:.
 
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Sumanta

Active member
Mar 9, 2018
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West Bengal, India
Microwave deposition of gallium oxide on III-nitride on silicon substrate

7 February 2018

Microwave deposition of gallium oxide on III-nitride on silicon substrate

The Indian Institute of Science has been developing microwave polycrystal deposition of β-phase gallium oxide (Ga2O3) on gallium nitride (GaN) on silicon with a view to application in deep ultraviolet (UV) optoelectronics [Piyush Jaiswal et al, Appl. Phys. Lett., vol112, p021105, 2018]. The team also demonstrated a visible-blind 230nm deep UV photodetector based on the β-Ga2O3 material.


The wide bandgap (4.9-5.3eV) of β-Ga2O3 could be useful for both deep UV and high-voltage applications. The absorption edge for β-Ga2O3 is in the wavelength range 240-250nm. Meanwhile, GaN has been developed for visible and near-UV light emission, along with, more recently, high-voltage and high-current-density electronics and for operation at high switching speeds. Bringing these technologies together, the researchers target heterostructures and devices that would exploit bandgap engineering opportunities.


Figure 1: Schematic representation of microwave-irradiation-assisted film deposition process.

The Ga2O3 was deposited on III-nitrides by microwave irradiation of a reactant solution containing Ga(III)acetylacetonate, a β-ketonate complex (Figure 1). The solvent was a mix of ethanol and 1-decanol. The substrate was a GaN stack with aluminium gallium nitride (AlGaN) layers typically designed for high-electron-mobility transistors (HEMTs).


“Epitaxially grown GaN layers were used as substrates, because of the close lattice match between h-GaN and β-Ga2O3 along the (100) direction,” the team comments. Temperatures during the deposition did not exceed 200°C. The duration was less than an hour, including ramp up and ramp down.


X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS) of the β-Ga2O3 did not find any nitrogen, suggesting uniform coverage of the III-nitride layers. Further findings were some carbon from the organic solvents and an oxygen deficiency leading to vacancies and an expectation of n-type conductivity.


X-ray diffraction studies suggested a nano-crystalline Ga2O3 structure with an estimated thickness of 70-80nm. The average crystallite size was 3.3nm and the material was in the γ-phase. Rapid thermal annealing at 950°C for 10 minutes converted the phase to β with 22.4nm crystallites.


The researchers comment: “The counter-intuitive formation of γ-Ga2O3 at sub-200°C is attributable to locally elevated temperatures in the irradiated solution and to the nucleation kinetics of γ-Ga2O3 formation because γ-Ga2O3 has a spinel structure associated with many vacancies, and crystals containing vacant sites are stabilized at low crystallization temperatures.”


The x-ray results were backed up by scanning electron microscopy (SEM) and atomic force microscopy (AFM).


Figure 2: (a) Schematic of AlGaN/GaN HEMT stack (side-view). (b) Optical micrograph of fabricated MSM device (top-view). (c) Variation of spectral response (SR) with wavelength on log scale as function of bias. Inset: variation of SR with wavelength as a function of bias on a linear scale. (d) Variation of dark current and photocurrent with applied bias. Photocurrent was measured under 230nm illumination. (e) Variation of peak responsivity (SR at 230nm) with applied bias (measured at an optical chopping frequency of 30Hz).


Nickel/gold Schottky contacts were deposited on the β-Ga2O3 layer to create a metal-semiconductor-metal photodetector (Figure 2). The electrodes consisted of 16 interdigitated fingers. The width of the fingers was 5μm and the spacing was 6μm. The active area is given as 250μmx300μm.


Peak spectral responsivity occurred at 236nm deep UV – 0.1A/W at 22V bias and 0.8A/W at 35V. Compared with the response at 400nm visible wavelengths, the rejection ratio was more than 103 at 22V bias. The kink downward in the response at 365nm near-UV is attributed to absorption and conduction in the narrower ~3.4eV bandgap GaN layer beneath the β-Ga2O3. The dark current at 20V was ~12nA, compared with ~82nA under 230nm illumination.


The researchers suggest that the increase in peak response at 35V was due to internal gain. The team explains: “This gain comes from either an oxygen-deficient film, leading to trapping of holes in bulk, or interface states at the metal-semiconductor (M-S) Schottky junction enabling hole trapping at the M-S junction itself. As the M-S junction has to maintain charge neutrality, more electrons have to flow from the metal side, subsequently lowering the Schottky barrier, thereby leading to gain in the photodetector.”

The author Mike Cooke is a freelance technology journalist who has worked in the semiconductor and advanced technology sectors since 1997.
 

Bali78

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Dec 26, 2017
1,029
1,046
USA
I feel like signing a petition to PMO for this. Anyone is game ?
Dude, nothing is going to happen. There is a huge nexus to kill indigenous projects. Let me share some personal experience.

I started my carrier at a central govt R&D lab and my group was responsible for designing 3G base stations. By 2004, basic prototype was ready and we were preparing for field trial. One fine day, the executive director scrapped the project because according to him there is no market for 3G in mobile comm market!! Can you believe that?? No market for 3G??

And most interesting part was, he started a project to design 2G base stations!! When the whole world was migrating from 2G to 3G, our genius director pushed us the other way round!! As expected the 2G project was scrapped since there was no market and by 2008-09, 3G deployment started in India. Had we continued with our 3G project, we would have been ready with a truly competitive product for Indian market.

Most engineers were from IITs/ BITS and worked 12-16 hrs a day, even over weekends, for 6-7 years. They overlooked extremely lucrative offers from MNCs, just for the sense of achievement of developing something truly word class and this gentleman crushed everything with one stupid decision!!

Was he really that stupid?? Hell no!! He retired after couple of years and joined a telecom equipment giant.

The effect of this was devastating for the lab. Most engineers including me, left within few months and many of them are now outside India. Let me tell you, we still swear by the amount of knowledge we gained in that lab and even after a decade and half it's relevant in our current projects. BTW, my current VP is also from the same lab.
So basically we studied at premier institutes funded by Indian tax payers, got trained at world class labs funded by Indian government and now contributing to American companies!! Because some SoB, derailed Indian projects, for his personal gains.
I have no doubts about why DRDO/HAL projects keep missing the deadlines. There are significant number of inefficient engineers, but internal sabotage plays a big role!!
 

Proud_Indian

Abhay
Dec 2, 2017
157
196
Dude, nothing is going to happen. There is a huge nexus to kill indigenous projects. Let me share some personal experience.

I started my carrier at a central govt R&D lab and my group was responsible for designing 3G base stations. By 2004, basic prototype was ready and we were preparing for field trial. One fine day, the executive director scrapped the project because according to him there is no market for 3G in mobile comm market!! Can you believe that?? No market for 3G??

And most interesting part was, he started a project to design 2G base stations!! When the whole world was migrating from 2G to 3G, our genius director pushed us the other way round!! As expected the 2G project was scrapped since there was no market and by 2008-09, 3G deployment started in India. Had we continued with our 3G project, we would have been ready with a truly competitive product for Indian market.

Most engineers were from IITs/ BITS and worked 12-16 hrs a day, even over weekends, for 6-7 years. They overlooked extremely lucrative offers from MNCs, just for the sense of achievement of developing something truly word class and this gentleman crushed everything with one stupid decision!!

Was he really that stupid?? Hell no!! He retired after couple of years and joined a telecom equipment giant.

The effect of this was devastating for the lab. Most engineers including me, left within few months and many of them are now outside India. Let me tell you, we still swear by the amount of knowledge we gained in that lab and even after a decade and half it's relevant in our current projects. BTW, my current VP is also from the same lab.
So basically we studied at premier institutes funded by Indian tax payers, got trained at world class labs funded by Indian government and now contributing to American companies!! Because some SoB, derailed Indian projects, for his personal gains.
I have no doubts about why DRDO/HAL projects keep missing the deadlines. There are significant number of inefficient engineers, but internal sabotage plays a big role!!
Such a sorry state of affairs! :(
 
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Golden_Rule

Boundless Seeker
Dec 6, 2017
987
666
USA
IIT BOMBAY AND ISRO’S SCL INDIGENOUSLY AUGMENT THEIR 180-NANOMETER TECHNOLOGY FOR VERSATILE AND POWERFUL CHIPS



The transistor, a semiconductor device used to boost or switch electronic signals, is a widely used component in almost every electronic device, big and small. In fact, it is often considered as one of the greatest inventions of the 20th century. As electronic devices become sophisticated, and find new applications, different types of transistors are being designed and developed to suit those applications. Among them is the Bipolar Junction Transistor (BJT), a transistor that uses both electron and hole charge carriers (bipolar) for its operation. It is now touted to play a big role in the Internet of Things (IoT) applications.

But how does this transistor fit in the bigger landscape? Almost every IoT solution needs sensors, which collect data from their surroundings. This data (or signals) could either be digital like the images captured by a camera, or analog as in the case of audio signals. Processing the two types of signals needs a versatile technology platform that can work with mixed signals and result in optimal performance. While the Complementary Metal Oxide Semiconductor (CMOS) transistors handle digital signals, BJTs work with analog signals. Bi-CMOS (short for Bipolar-CMOS) technology combines the two transistor technologies in one chip.

In space and communication related applications, BJTs are used in antennas for communications. It is compatible with CMOS. It can drive long transmission lines to enable communication chips working with signals of very high frequency (250MHz -20GHz). ISRO’s primary interest is to develop such light-weight, energy-efficient, high-frequency chips needed for payloads in satellites and rockets. Conventional frequency amplifiers like gallium arsenide (GaAs) or gallium nitride (GaN) are stand-alone and result in bulkier chips when coupled with CMOS based signal-processing units.

Now, researchers at the Indian Institute of Technology - Bombay (IIT-B), in a collaborative effort with ISRO’s Semi-Conductor Labs (SCL), Chandigarh, have developed a completely indigenous Bipolar Junction Transistor (BJT) that can work with Bi-CMOS. This development was the result of a year long research led by Prof. Udayan Ganguly and Dr. Piyush Bhatt. Prof. Ganguly, an Associate Professor at the Department of Electrical Engineering, IIT-B also the co-Principal Investigator at the Centre of Excellence in Nanoelectronics (CEN) at IIT-B.

“The technology adds High Frequency Circuits to the existing digital CMOS technology. It enables high frequency communications and analog/mixed chips for various applications like IoT and space”, says Prof. Ganguly. “Bi-CMOS technology with integrated BJT based amplifiers reduces form factor, power consumption and cost – all essential for space applications”, he adds.​
Making in India - a strategic move

India has two semiconductor manufacturing organizations - STAR-C (a unit of SITAR by Govt. of India) and the SCL, which is the most advanced fabrication facility in the country, producing high frequency, low power digital CMOS for strategic and national needs. However, international tech giants have largely pioneered cutting-edge semiconductor technologies. These exclusive technologies may be availed through technology transfers -- the process of transferring scientific findings from one organization to another for the purpose of further development and commercialization.

“To have unfettered access to such technologies for national needs, indigenous technology development is a must” remarks Prof. Ganguly, citing the reasons for the need to augment this production technology indigenously. He also points out two important gaps that have stymied indigenous technology development -- the gap in CMOS technology development and manufacturing expertise, and the gap in advanced semiconductor manufacturing.

“While electronics is one of the top research intensive area globally, India has not had a significant stake until the Centres for Excellence in Nanoelectronics (CENs) were seeded at IIT-B and IISc-Bangalore by the Ministry of Electronics”, he says adding that today, these centres draw international talent and are led by professors with first-hand technology development experience. Pointing out the need for fabrication facilities, he adds -- “While the electronics policy of 2017 claims that electronics imports will outstrip oil imports by 2020, the mega-fab creation in India is still under work.”​
In this context, the development of the indigenous BJT is indeed a milestone for the CEN at IIT-B. The technology can, not only severe strategic applications in the areas of space and defense, but also in the development of digital and analog chips. Going forward, these chips can be developed and manufactured by SCL, or can be expanded for other corporate players to enter the business, leveraging SCL capabilities as a pilot line for scale-up.



Enabling the growth of ESDM

In the wake of India’s growing Electronics System Design & Manufacturing (ESDM) sector, and estimates that the Indian electronics' market would grow to be $228 billion in 2020, there is also a need for innovations in circuit design and manufacturing to go beyond the reach of large design houses with connections to giant foundries. “Smaller design teams have access to only standard technologies available commercially”, opines Prof. Ganguly, citing how SCL’s ability to develop custom technologies will add a further edge to demonstrate proof of concept IoT technologies. “This could help develop innovative products for electronic sensing and control in various nationally relevant environments like medical, agriculture, efficient home, public places and factories”, he adds.

In addition, the Centre for Excellence in Nanoelectronics (CEN) -- a collaborative project between IIT-B and IISc, provides a world-class expertise that excels in semiconductor device design, fabrication, modeling and reliability. With the development of BJT, technology development with Indian organizations has reached new levels, surpassing the persistent challenge to interface with Indian manufacturing houses in electronics. “CEN has enabled the group to have excellent in-house ‘hands-on’ expertise in new technology development. In addition, the group has worked with various international research and manufacturing houses to develop key technologies”, says Prof. Ganguly. He further adds that “Every bit of knowledge, technique and idea in our research labs can translate into either commercial or strategic products of the future.”

And what does a success story like this mean for the country’s educational institutes that are aiming to be the best in the world? “Success stories like this percolate through the entire community nationally to serve as examples to emulate”, signs off Prof. Ganguly.​
Evolution of Semiconductor size
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Shajida Khan

Senior member
Dec 27, 2017
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Dude, nothing is going to happen. There is a huge nexus to kill indigenous projects. Let me share some personal experience.

I started my carrier at a central govt R&D lab and my group was responsible for designing 3G base stations. By 2004, basic prototype was ready and we were preparing for field trial. One fine day, the executive director scrapped the project because according to him there is no market for 3G in mobile comm market!! Can you believe that?? No market for 3G??

And most interesting part was, he started a project to design 2G base stations!! When the whole world was migrating from 2G to 3G, our genius director pushed us the other way round!! As expected the 2G project was scrapped since there was no market and by 2008-09, 3G deployment started in India. Had we continued with our 3G project, we would have been ready with a truly competitive product for Indian market.

Most engineers were from IITs/ BITS and worked 12-16 hrs a day, even over weekends, for 6-7 years. They overlooked extremely lucrative offers from MNCs, just for the sense of achievement of developing something truly word class and this gentleman crushed everything with one stupid decision!!

Was he really that stupid?? Hell no!! He retired after couple of years and joined a telecom equipment giant.

The effect of this was devastating for the lab. Most engineers including me, left within few months and many of them are now outside India. Let me tell you, we still swear by the amount of knowledge we gained in that lab and even after a decade and half it's relevant in our current projects. BTW, my current VP is also from the same lab.
So basically we studied at premier institutes funded by Indian tax payers, got trained at world class labs funded by Indian government and now contributing to American companies!! Because some SoB, derailed Indian projects, for his personal gains.
I have no doubts about why DRDO/HAL projects keep missing the deadlines. There are significant number of inefficient engineers, but internal sabotage plays a big role!!
I believe having a skin-in-the-game is a key sign of honesty and success. Issue with government funded labs is that almost no one has a skin-in-the-game. They will get their salaries. This is why it becomes a breeding ground for those who grow by value-signaling. Here is something that I found when I was researching about Tejas.

Tejas was defined -- in early to mid 80s! -- to have first flight by early to mid 90s and introduction by mid 90s to late 90s. Also, They wanted to do everything! Radar, engine, airframe -- everything! in 8-10 years of development time and mere 5-6 years of induction and introduction time!

Here is another fighter, very similar to Tejas: Grippen. It was envisoned in 1979. Design and development lasted till 1988 -- when it had its first flight. Introduced by 1997. 18 years in all! And it didn't try to develop its own jet engine. They had 3-4 decades of experience under their belt and a working radar before hand.
 
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