Globalfoundries' Morgenstern: Diversity is key in Dresden: Page 2 of 5

April 15, 2019 //By Peter Clarke
Globalfoundries' Morgenstern: Diversity is key in Dresden
eeNews Europe caught up with Thomas Morgenstern, the managing director of Globalfoundries' operations in Dresden, Germany, and found a semiconductor executive with a remit to broaden the company's approach to multiple markets.

The new strategy was one of diversification; to be achieved by bringing in 40, 55 and 65nm CMOS process modules – including mixed-signal, non-volatile memory and high voltage – from Globalfoundries older fabs in Singapore. "Dresden is made to run 28nm so the plan is to bring in the breadth of support the company offers at 55 and 40nm and transfer it down to 28nm."

Fortunately, the period of short-time work did not need to be long. It is over now and Globalfoundries is hiring again, Morgenstern said. The Dresden facility currently employs about 3,200 people and is heading towards 3,300.

Thomas Morgenstern with the Minister President of Saxony, Michael Kretschmer. Globalfoundries is one of the largest investors and employers in Saxony. Source: Globalfoundries.

Offering 55 and 40nm CMOS with analog, BCD smartpower and embedded non-volatile memory (eNVM) as well as digital 28nm CMOS and 22nm FDSOI, plus RFSOI gives Globalfoundries Dresden, a better chance to be relevant to customers, said Morgenstern.

At present Globalfoundries has a couple of non-volatile memory options for 28nm CMOS and is offering embedded MRAM on its 22FDX process (see Startup tapes out MRAM-based MCU) and developing ferroelectric memory (see Dresden NVM startup raises funds). At 40nm Globalfoundries makes use of so-called ESF3 split-gate flash memory technology licensed from Microchip subsidiary, Solid-State Technology. The company has migrated ESF3 to 28nm CMOS.

It took a lot of effort to bring 22FDX to market, Morgenstern said. For the pure digital variant of 22FDX demand had lagged but it is building gradually, he added. But developing a broad range of varieties was also a benefit for 22FDX; providing opportunities in RF and millimeter waves with a good fit to automotive and 5G communications.

Morgenstern said Globalfoundries even has a high-voltage modular addition to 22FDX – below 20V – for use in a display driver project in development. It is due to go into production at the end of 2020.

Next: No thanks for the MEMS

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