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POET provides strategic committee update

The company has put together a plan for establishing the gallium arsenide (GaAs) POET technology with several potential industry partners who have foundry infrastructure to take POET to the manufacturing stage
POET Technologies Inc. has announced the completion of the work of the Special Strategic Committee (SSC) and the update of its published milestones.

The Board of Directors has endorsed the company’s commercialisation plan put forward by the SSC which is chaired by Executive Director Peter Copetti.

The SSC was established in June 2013 to investigate and initiate strategic alternatives for the commercialisation of the POET technology platform using a multi-faceted approach based on discussions with potential industry partners.

The following major recommendations of the SCC have been implemented:

    A plan for establishing POET Development Alliances (PDA’s) - The company is in discussion with several potential industry partners who have the necessary foundry infrastructure to take the POET technology to the manufacturing stage. The partnership roles encompass fab, tool and engineering resources as well as product and library development for future applications. Ideal partners will be producers of products which can incorporate the POET IP technology to provide the lowest power consumption and cost-effective industry disruptive system solutions.

    Update to Milestone #5 and Milestone #7 - Both milestones are expected to be completed in the first 3 to 5 weeks of fiscal 2014. Significant progress has been made and both milestones are in the final phases of testing. Specific announcements will be made once the final testing is complete for both the Switching Laser Demonstration and the Optical Thyristor-based Infrared Detector and transistor combinations.

    Drive for Reduction of Feature Size to 100-nm Range (100nm), Milestone #8 - The company has introduced new specific milestones associated with reducing feature size to the 100 nm range in scale. The POET team has realised submicron device operation down to 200 nm. The path to maintaining scaled operation down to 100nm has been identified.

The company has scheduled its MBE facility to be shut down for cleaning and maintenance for a period of approximately 6 weeks after completing milestones 5 and 7. After restarting the MBE, the company expects to complete milestone 8 and, accordingly, the timeline for the completion of this milestone has been moved to the first quarter of fiscal 2014. 

The 100-nm goal is matched to the state-of-the-art commercial III-V foundry capabilities and will demonstrate the greater than 50x speed improvement together with lower power consumption by a factor ranging from 4 to 10 depending on the application as compared to silicon at smaller nodes.

Significant progress has been made on the completion of this milestone, although it has proven to be more difficult to achieve with the limited equipment available to POET. This highlights the importance of developing an alliance with a fab partner where repeating this milestone and improving it will be significantly easier with advanced lithography equipment standard for CMOS processing.

The revolutionary features of POET, monolithic integration of fully complementary transistors together with optical transmitters and transceivers are expected to disrupt current optical-electrical techniques with faster and less expensive monolithic IC solutions.

For the first time p-channel and n-channel devices can be integrated monolithically in a III/V semiconductor environment with the potential to fully replace all silicon based CMOS circuitry with higher speed and lower power. Fully integrated single device optical transceivers including the full range of digital data processing at speeds of 100Gbps and beyond will become a reality as they cannot be manufactured with current silicon technology for power, speed and cost reasons.

Design Kit Preparation

In addition to optimising device parameters and yields, the next focus is to establish POET’s technology design kits, a comprehensive design rules and device parameter library for POET, which will enable customers and partners to implement the POET process into their preferred foundries.

It will also help licensed designs in a POET device ecosystem to proliferate and help existing silicon library functions to migrate to POET technology based circuitry in a minimum amount of time. In order for the POET team to focus on the preparation of technology design kits, the SCC has recommended that Milestone #9 and #10 be delayed and new completion dates for those milestones will be announced once a primary industry partner has been identified.

Operation Management and Program management

Besides the announced appointment of a Senior VP of Operations in November 2013, key management changes are underway at the research facility in Storrs, Connecticut. An efficient program management will be instituted and all documentation and design kit efforts will be handled on-site in a direct manner.

This step underscores the current transition from research to development oriented activities within POET indicating the maturity of the technology at the present time. This management reporting structure will encourage the success of the finalization of the research stage of POET and provide for the long term substantiation and transfer of the involved IP. A new development team will be formed with partners to scale the POET Technology bringing it to a mature stage.

Globalisation Plans

The company is planning several initiatives to raise global awareness of POET and increase its global investor base. The Company intends to split monetization of the IP between multiple commercial markets and military applications and products to maximize returns of all the different aspects of the POET IP.

“The SSC’s recommendations are the cornerstones of the xompany’s strategy for unlocking the value of POET’s intellectual property,” says Copetti. “Preparing for a development alliance with comprehensive documentation and full availability of a technology design kit will definitively enable industry partners to incorporate POET technology into their products, thereby shortening time-to-market for potential products, and helping to commercialise POET in the marketplace quickly. We are encouraged by our ongoing discussions to date with potential partners. As the general basic strategic goals recommended by the SSC have been adopted by the Board of Directors, the SSC will be dissolved and the Company will now change its focus from research to development, with a view to 2014 being the major recognition year for the POET technology.”

The company’s proprietary POET platform has demonstrated planar monolithic standard CMOS fabrication of integrated circuit GaAs based devices containing both electronic and optical elements on a single wafer.

By offering process IP with the potential for increased speed, density, reliability, lower power and costs, POET offers the semiconductor industry the ability to disrupt Moore’s Law to the next cadence level, overcoming current silicon-based lithography and device bottlenecks in regards to speed and power. POET is a truly disruptive technology that is expected to change the roadmap capabilities for a broad range of applications and markets.

POET is offering a broad technology basis for several key markets. The development of technology design kits in fiscal 2014 will focus on a phased approach. Specific markets and partners will be targeted over time as technology design kits become available.

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