Fujitsu, NEC Electronics, Renesas Technology and Toshiba are to seek to define a standard process technology that can be applied to the manufacture of advanced system LSIs at the 45-nanometre (nm) level and beyond.
The joint program will define a basic standard for certain aspects of the process technology that will enable each company to have easier access to the intellectual property (IP) and libraries of the others, in consideration of possible shared use of one another’s wafer fabs and potential integration of fabs in the future.
Following technical studies, the companies will strive to define the standardised specifications by the end of this year.
Success in defining a basic standard has the potential to promote cross use of IP and libraries among the participants, improve fab operating rates, and facilitate large-scale capital investments among the companies.
The framework is expected to boost the overall efficiency of the companies as well as the Japanese semiconductor industry.