Soitec, an international company with French roots, has entered into a multi-year strategic agreement with the chip manufacturer GlobalFoundries. The undisclosed agreement provides for the regular supply of 300mm RF-SOI plates to GlobalFoundries. Such plates are extremely effective in the manufacture of RF components for mobile devices, and GlobalFoundries is the leader in this area.
According to the management of GlobalFoundries, without the participation of the company, the rapid spread of 5G would have been impossible. “Eight out of ten smartphones on the market today include silicon produced by GlobalFoundries, and demand for our diverse RF solutions continues to skyrocket as the industry moves to 5G.”– said Dr. Bami Bastani, senior vice president and general manager of mobile and wireless communications.
Three years ago, GlobalFoundries entered into a five-year contract with Soitec to supply FD-SOI (completely depleted silicon on insulator) substrates. At first, FD-SOI substrates were used both for the production of radio components and for the production of single-chip circuits with integrated radio components (RF on FD-SOI). RF-SOI substrates are a very different solution that is well suited for the release of integrated RF modules to interface SoCs with antennas.
RF-SOI substrates have high resistivity, which provides the highest possible Q-factor for passive elements, and this is a minimum of energy loss. They also provide noise reduction, which paves the way for good performance amplifiers.
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