Solid state batteriesimec.istartSemiconductor technology & processing

5 min

The five highlights of April 2018

Life is busy! So you might not always have the time to keep up with imec's latest news and achievements. On this page, you can find a quick overview of what imec has been doing in the past month.

Imec reaches milestone on road to next-gen solid-state batteries 

Beginning of April, imec announced that it has made an innovative type of solid-state Li-ion battery achieving an energy density of 200 Wh/liter at a charging speed of 0.5C (2 hours). Key to the new battery is a solid nanocomposite electrolyte with an exceptionally high conductivity of up to 10 mS/cm and with a potential for even higher conductivities. 

This battery is a milestone on the roadmap to surpass the performance of wet Li-ion batteries and reach 1000Wh/L at 2C by 2024. With this roadmap of performance engineering, imec’s battery technology is ready to become a contender to power tomorrow’s fast-charging, long-haul vehicles.

Want to know more? Read the full press release here.

Pop the champagne: imec.istart companies hit 100 million follow-up funding!

Founded in 2011, imec.istart has become a household name in the start-up scene. It has grown into a leading tech accelerator with a portfolio of over 150 tech start-ups active in very diverse sectors, ranging from media and logistics to healthcare. 

As part of the imec.istart track, an early-stage financial injection is provided. According to the UBI Global report and the Europe Scaleup Reports by Omar Mohout, this initial investment is often wat convinces other investors to get on board. Imec.istart thus functions as a quality label that opens new doors.

Over the years, the imec.istart companies have become increasingly successful at procuring follow-up funding. Today the portfolio companies managed to raise over €100M in funding. What’s even more remarkable is that almost 70% of this amount was procured in the last 2.5 years.

Here is a link to more numbers and info on imec.istart.

Experts gather for imec’s Partner Technical Week

The last week of April, imec organized its Partner Technical Week (PTW). The PTWs are held every six months at imec’s headquarters in Leuven to allow specialists from imec and its partners to exchange research results. With plenary sessions, breakouts and poster sessions, the event allows experts to get up-to-date with the latest R&D results and to finetune research plans for the coming period. This time around, the event was attended by over 650 specialists from 75 companies. 

Imec and Qromis unveil high-performance GaN transitors on innovative substrate

Imec and fabless technology innovator Qromis announced their development of high-performance enhancement-mode p-GaN power devices on 200mm engineered substrates (Coefficient of Thermal Expansion (CTE)-matched). The devices were processed in imec’s silicon pilot line. 

Imec has pioneered the development of GaN-on-Si power technology for 200mm wafers, paving the way to high-volume manufacturing of power devices for 100V, 200V and 650V operating voltage ranges. The new substrate offered by Qromis and processes developed at imec opens the path to 900V-1200V power devices. 

Want to know more? Read the full press release here.

Breakthrough in wafer-based growth of 2D materials

Also in April, imec presented the very first 2D layer of molybdenum disulfide (MoS2) ever grown on 300mm wafers using chemical vapor deposition (CVD). To realize this breakthrough, imec’s scientists applied major modifications to existing tools and facilities. The growth process itself was first developed in the 200mm fab. 

2D materials are crystalline materials consisting of a single layer of atoms. The best known example is graphene, which is a single layer of graphite. Such 2D materials have exciting properties which make them candidates to be used at the heart of next generation electronics, e.g. to create the ultimate transistor with a channel thickness down to the level of single atoms and a gate length of few nanometers.

Growing 2D materials on wafers is an important step in moving 2D material R&D to wafer-scale fabrication. 

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