4 November 2003 Grenoble, France Lightwave -- TRONIC'S Microsystems, a developer of custom micro-electro-mechnical systems (MEMS) for high-end applications, held the inauguration of its new state-of-the-art MEMS production facility in Crolles, France last week. The company is enhancing its production capacity of high performance, custom MEMS products based on specialized thick silicon-on-insulator (SOI) micromachining processes.
The inauguration, led by Director of CEA Technological Research Mr. Jean Therme and with the presence of the mayor of Crolles Mr. Jean-Claude Paturel and the Director of SERCEL Nantes Carquefou Mr. Raymond Basset, attracted many leading figures from the national and international microsystems communities.
"This new step is a key event in the development of TRONIC'S. In a few years of progressive expansion, the spin-off of CEA Leti has become a leading player in the very competitive MEMS market. This success is the fruit of an exemplary application of innovations issuing from the CEA Leti laboratories and is underpinned by a strong strategic partnership," said Jean Therme.
"Our strategic partnership with CEA Leti has enabled us to build solid technological and industrial foundations for our growth," said StÃ©phane Renard, president and founder of the company. "Our new manufacturing facility, with double the equipment and with space for a greater number of operators, will allow us to respond both to the growing needs of our existing partners and to address those of new customers."
TRONIC'S Microsystems has completed the installation phase of equipment at its new site and is currently qualifying its production processes. It is on target with its objective of completely transferring its existing production at the CEA Leti site to its new Crolles site by year end. This task is facilitated by the use of compatible equipment for production, packaging, and testing at both sites.
At 10,000 wafers per year, the new production facility represents a quadrupling of previous production capacity. Production output will further double starting year end 2004 with the introduction of 150-mm (6-inch) production processes which will supercede the existing 100-mm (4-inch) production processes. The new facility is installed with both 100-mm and 150-mm compatible equipment.
The new 13,500 sq. ft. manufacturing facility is comprised of 6,500 sq. ft. of office space and 7,000 square feet of production area of which 4,300 sq. ft. are clean room facilities. It represents a total investment of €6.5 million-- €2 million for the clean rooms and €4.5 million for the equipment.