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Aixtron joins EC Pilot Line for 2D Materials and graphene


European Commission funds 2D pilot line as part of the Graphene Flagship / Integration of Graphene and Related 2D Materials into semiconductor platform

Deposition equipment company Aixtron SE and its subsidiary Aixtron Ltd (UK) are key partners of the 2D Experimental Pilot Line initiative of the Graphene Flagship. Aixtron, as one of the tool manufacturers, will be responsible for developing the growth and transfer tools and processes necessary for Graphene and Related Materials (GRM).

In order to scale up and integrate graphene and 2D materials into semiconductor devices, Aixtron will develop a MOCVD reactor for growth of these materials directly on to large substrates up to 300mm using its proprietary Close Coupled Showerhead (CCS) technology. Direct growth allows industrial grade 2D materials and their associated heterostructures to be grown in situ for front-end applications.

For back-end integration, Aixtron will investigate novel processes as well as develop an automated transfer system of 2D material structures on to device wafers. These platforms will provide key capabilities for the pilot line in realising large scale integration of graphene and 2D materials into logic, memory, photonic and sensor devices.

2D-EPL covers the whole value chain

The European Commission is providing 20 million euros over 4 years for the 2D Experimental Pilot Line (2D-EPL) which started on 1 October 2020. The project will establish an European ecosystem for prototype production of GRM based electronics, photonics and sensors.

The 2D-EPL, comprising 11 partners, covers the whole value chain, including equipment manufacturers, chemical and material providers and pilot processing lines. This will achieve the objective of providing prototyping services to not only the core Graphene Flagship project, but also to external companies, research centers and academics to rapidly drive the adoption of graphene and 2D materials in wafer-scale devices.

"We are very excited to be part of the 2D-EPL project. As a technology leader in semiconductor equipment for more than 30 years, our core expertise is to develop innovative solutions for complex material deposition - and deposition solutions for graphene and 2D materials are a key part of our product portfolio. These materials require very precise composition as well as thickness control down to one atomic layer, and we will leverage the technologies from our semiconductor production platforms to make this new class of materials a success for wafer scale devices," says Michael Heuken, VP corporate R&D of Aixtron SE and professor at RWTH Aachen University.

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