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Tekcore moves into GaN laser production

Taiwanese high-brightness LED epiwafer and chip producer Tekcore buys a multiwafer MOCVD reactor from Aixtron to ramp GaN laser fabrication.

Epitaxy equipment vendor Aixtron has received a purchase order from the Taiwanese company Tekcore for a production system designed to manufacture blue-violet lasers based on GaN.

The AIX 2400G3 HT "integrated concept" MOCVD reactor, which supports 11x2-inch wafer production, will be installed at Tekcore's semiconductor fab at Nantou in Taiwan.

Blue-violet laser producers are now gearing up for a widespread ramp to high volumes, in anticipation of increasing demand for their use in high-definition DVD players and recorders.

Sony has already had to produce millions of blue lasers to support the roll-out of its PlayStation3 games console, while Sharp recently revealed plans to ramp up production of high-power GaN lasers for widespread use in high-definition DVD equipment (see related story).

In addition, Nichia says that it has now developed a 320 mW pulsed diode laser, which it is expected to commercialize in 2008.

Tekcore has concentrated mostly on GaN-based high-brightness LED epiwafers and chips previously, although it also had diode laser manufacturing capability. It already owns a number of MOCVD systems from Aixtron and its subsidiary Thomas Swan.

High-yielding volume production of blue-violet lasers based on GaN semiconductor material has proved to be a tough challenge for manufacturers to solve in recent years. But, with a Taiwanese producer stepping up to make the devices in large numbers, it would appear that these problems may now have been largely overcome.

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