European Semiconductor Technology Experts Meet in Aachen for 15th EWMOVPE-Workshop


Posted on June 3, 2013 @ 08:23 am



The long-standing European Workshop on Metalorganic Vapor Phase Epitaxy (EWMOVPE) returns to Aachen after 26 years. From June 2-5, 2013, physicists, chemists, material science specialists and engineers from research and industry discussed new possibilities in semiconductor technology in the Europaplatz Technology Centre (TZA). For more than three decades, the scientific community from the Aachen region has made a significant contribution to the worldwide success of this technology.

Hosts of the Workshop were the research alliance JARA (Jülich Aachen Research Alliance), the Peter Grünberg Institute 9 (Forschungszentrum Jülich) and the research group on GaN Device Technology (GaN-BET) at RWTH Aachen University.

From an industrial aspect, the system manufacturer AIXTRON supports the event. The company was established with this technology in 1983 as a spin-off of the RWTH Aachen. By developing and manufacturing MOVPE systems, it evolved into the global market leader in this field.

The aim of the four-day convention is to improve the understanding of technology and to develop approaches for novel material compounds with customized physical characteristics, particularly with an eye to energy-saving "green" technologies.

"Without the development of the MOVPE-technology there would not have been significant progress in nano- and optoeletronics,” said Dr. Hilde Hardtdegen of the Forschungszentrum Jülich. "The development of optical data transfer, LEDs for lighting engineering, as well as energy-efficient electronic and optoelectronic devices, is based on this process."

The graduated chemist is group leader for vapor phase epitaxy at Jülich and a member of the program committee of EWMOVPE since 1998. Her father, Professor Pieter Balk, had already intensively further developed the vapor phase epitaxy as the chair for semiconductor technology at RWTH in the seventies and perfected it to industrial maturity. Not only did he develop the format of a European platform for exchange between science and industry, but he also organized the first European EWMOVPE-Workshop in Aachen in 1987.

AIXTRON founders Dr. Meino Heyen and Dr. Holger Jürgensen - the latter being honorary chairman of the AIXTRON Supervisory Board - continued the success story of the MOVPE system now used globally. Both graduated from the Institute for Semiconductors at the RWTH with Professor Balk and developed their first MOVPE research system there.

"I am happy to continue the long-standing successful tradition of semiconductor epitaxy as a basis for new devices at the RWTH Aachen,” said Professor Andrei Vescan, head of the teaching and research division GaN device technology. "To this day, the Aachen region is active within the Jülich-Aachen Research Alliance with a variety of research activities in this area and is dedicated to fundamental issues of new materials deposition through the development of new deposition processes all the way to concepts for new devices for energy-efficient lighting and power electronics. The next step will be to advance devices and applications based on gallium nitride-on-silicon towards commercial products."

"We need inspiration from science," said Dr. Frank Schulte, vice president Europe at AIXTRON. “The contributions this year are at a very high scientific level and can also withstand international comparison."

Approaches such as the further development of the so-called nano-columns or GaN-based LEDs on large-scale silicon wafers have the potential to skip technological steps and achieve commercial application within a few years.

"The EWMOVPE-Workshop is an excellent example of the successful cooperation between science and industry,” said Prof. Dr. Sebastian M. Schmidt, Management Board Member of the Forschungs-zentrum Jülich. "The cooperation between RWTH Aachen and the Forschungszentrum Jülich produces verifiable scientific peak results that are experienced in the industrial sector as an impetus for innovation.”

The vapor phase epitaxy (MOVPE). which creates crystalline layers of a very high quality, is today the most important process in the manufacture of optoelectronic and electronic devices consisting of complex semiconductor-heterostructures. This process is the basis for the production of modern semiconductor light sources, such as light-emitting diodes and lasers, of high frequency transistors for mobile telephones, but also of high performance solar cells or devices for voltage transformers or power supply units.

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