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Tech Updates

Date
January 2018

Cyber-security researcher Anders Fogh has suggested a possible way to hack into chips powering most of the world’s computers, bringing the fears of Intel for real. The largest chipmaker has said that all the modern processors can be attacked by Meltdown and Spectre, emerging techniques that can expose crucial data. Meltdown exposes data directly by undermining the way information in different applications is kept separate by what’s known as a kernel, the key software at the core of every computer. research papers showed that CPUs let unauthorized users see the layout of the kernel, a set of instructions that guide how computers perform key tasks like managing files and security and allocating resources.

Forecast of Fab spending in 2018
Date
January 2018

According to the latest year-end report on the SEMI World Fab Forecast for spending in 2017 on fab equipment investments will reach a record high of $57 billion. High chip demand, strong pricing for memory, and fierce competition are driving the high-level of fab investments, with many companies investing at previously unseen levels for new fab construction and fab equipment. While many companies, including Intel, Micron, Toshiba (and Western Digital), and GLOBALFOUNDRIES increased fab investments for 2017 and 2018, the strong increase reflects spending by just two companies and primarily one region.

MEMS chip to control heart disease
Date
January 2018
Source

Medical research is going on to prevent cardiovascular diseases using a MEMS microfluidic chip, which mimics the blood flow in the arteries when fat and cholesterol accumulate as plaque on the interior arterial walls. The main feature of the chip is that it can model the inflammatory response of heart vessel cells that cause them to cut off the blood supply. The square-inch chip uses two stacked chambers, separated by a flexible polymer membrane, to simulate the conditions leading to a heart attack. The bottom chamber contains compressed air. The top chamber contains the blood (or bloodlike test fluid). To model a real heart accurately, the researchers cultured endothelial cells from coronary veins to line the fluid-filled chamber.

Date
December 2017

GlobalFoundries, Intel, Samsung and TSMC are migrating from the 16nm/14nm to the 10nm/7nm logic nodes. Intel already has encountered some difficulties, as it recently pushed out the volume ramp of its new 10nm process from the second half of 2017 to the first part of 2018. Though the silicon foundry business is slated for growth in 2018 but at the cost of several challenges. Many foundry vendors are ramping up a new 22nm process, although the demand remains uncertain for this technology right now. Above that, foundry vendors see enormous demand for 200mm capacity.

Date
December 2017
Source

Researchers at the Center for Integrated Nanostructure Physics have shown that defects in monolayer molybdenum disulfide (MoS2) exhibit electrical switching, providing new insights into the electrical properties of this material. As MoS2 is one of the most promising 2-D semiconductors, it is expected that these results will contribute to its future use in opto-electronics. the petrochemical industry has long taken advantage of the catalytic activity of MoS2 edges, characterized by the presence of a high concentration of defects, to produce petroleum products with reduced sulfur dioxide (SO2) emissions. In IBS, a team of physicists, material scientists, and electrical engineers worked closely together to explore the electronic properties of sulfur vacancies in MoS2 monolayers, using a combination of atomic force microscopy (AFM) and noise analysis.