Cree acquires SiC substrate manufacturer Intrinsic

June 30, 2006
Cree, the largest manufacturer of silicon carbide substrates, has acquired Intrinsic, which makes wafers with zero micropipes.
Cree is to acquire privately-held Intrinsic Semiconductor Corporation, a specialist manufacturer of low-defect-density SiC substrates, in a deal valued at $46 million.

Cree is the leading manufacturer of SiC substrates, and uses the wafers to grow gallium-nitride-based material for the fabrication of LED chips.

Intrinsic is of interest because the company has developed the first commercially available, zero-micropipe (ZMP) SiC substrates. Micropipes are defects that can ruin the performance of LEDs, lasers and electronic devices grown on SiC wafers.

Cree believes that Intrinsic's technology will help it to move to larger-diameter wafers, which will in turn lead to cost reductions. Most of Cree's LED chips are now manufactured using 3-inch SiC substrates.

Chuck Swoboda, Cree's chairman and CEO, said "We believe the combination of Intrinsic's ZMP technology and Cree's technology and manufacturing expertise will accelerate the commercialization of low-defect 100mm and 150mm substrates."

Swoboda said that the substrates should support Cree's cost roadmap for LEDs. "More importantly, they should also enable us to more rapidly commercialize higher-power devices for motor-control applications and hybrid vehicles," he said.

For more details, see the story on the Compound Semiconductor website.