Tokyo, Japan and Leuven, Belgium – May 12, 2015 – JSR Corporation, a leading materials company and imec, a world-leading nanoelectronics R&D center, today signed a Letter of Intent (LOI) to partner in enabling manufacturing and quality control of EUV lithography materials for the semiconductor industry. This partnership will be formalized by establishing a joint venture with imec as minority shareholder. The signing ceremony was held at the Embassy of the Kingdom of Belgium in Tokyo (Japan).
EUV lithography is considered as one of the main drivers to extend Moore’s law towards single digit nanometer technology nodes. Imec and JSR’s collaboration, will allow both companies to leverage their strengths when developing photoresist solutions for the semiconductor industry to manufacture the most advanced devices. JSR will provide manufacturing technology to the joint venture including upgrading the facility at its wholly-owned subsidiary in Belgium, JSR Micro NV, by installing manufacturing and analytical equipment. Imec will provide expertise and services to the joint venture for quality control on materials. In addition to the manufacturing of JSR brand photoresists, the joint venture will offer toll-manufacturing capability to other material suppliers with confidentiality secured.
“JSR has been a strategic partner of imec for a long time, and I am excited with this intensified collaboration,” stated Luc Van den hove, president and CEO at imec. “This collaboration strengthens our supplier hub concept, a neutral open innovation R&D platform that involves suppliers more deeply and at an early stage of process step and module development. The partnership enabled through close proximity between the JSR manufacturing facility and the imec technology platform will allow our partners to gain access to best-in-class materials for next-generation technologies.”
“We know that EUV lithography is required to realize Moore’s law in semiconductor manufacturing technologies and we continuously focus our R&D efforts to meet industry needs,” said Nobu Koshiba, President of JSR Corporation. “JSR has successfully developed not only chemically amplified photoresists, but also newly designed chemistries with very high sensitivity and good productivity. Our strength has also extended to peripheral materials, such as multilayer materials. The industry is requesting material suppliers to prepare manufacturing infrastructure and quality control capabilities for defect-free lithography solutions, as well as to improve photoresist performance to match EUV exposure equipment. It is by knowing those industry needs and requirements very well, that we, two world leading organizations that have supported the semiconductor industry for a long time, come to this unique idea to form a manufacturing joint venture to support those future industry needs. This is done based on our very long, trust-worthy relationship with imec. This is a very exciting challenge for us and I have great respect for imec for their brave and challenging spirits.”