Plessey Orders Aixtron AIX G5+ C System for MicroLED Production

German company Aixtron SE reported that UK firm Plessey Semiconductors ordered Aixtron’s AIX G5+ C Planetary Reactor®.
Plessey intends to use the metal organic chemical vapor deposition (MOCVD) system to increase its manufacturing capability of gallium nitride on silicon (GaN-on-Si) epitaxial wafers for next-generation microLED applications.

The AIX G5+C MOCVD system features an automatic cassette-to-cassette (C2C) wafer transfer module, and it has two separate chamber configuration options, which enables 8×6 inch or 5×8 inch GaN-on-Si wafers to be automatically loaded and removed in an enclosed cassette environment. The MOCVD system adds to the company’s existing metal MOCVD reactors from Aixtron, which have configurations of 7×6 inch or 3×8 inch wafers with manual loading.

Automated Self-Cleaning Helps Produce Fewer Wafer Defects

According to Aixtron, the new reactor’s automated self-cleaning technology ensures the device is clean on each run, thereby helping to produce a very low level of wafer defects and significantly reducing downtime for maintenance. The new equipment also boasts faster ramp and cool down along with a high susceptor unload temperature to reduce the recipe time.

The AIX G5+ C reactor will support Plessey’s plans to increase the research and development capacity of its monolithic microLEDs using the company’s proprietary GaN-on-Si technology. Plessey says its microLEDs provide high brightness and very high pixel density with extremely low power consumption.

These performance characteristics have the potential to disrupt many existing application sectors of conventional display technologies including LCD and OLED. Such microLED displays combine very high-density RGB pixel arrays with CMOS backplanes to produce very high-brightness, low-power, and high-frame-rate image sources for wearable electronics and head-mounted displays, as well as augmented reality and virtual reality systems.

Mike Snaith, Chief Operating Officer at Plessey, explained, “Our continued and valuable relationship with Aixtron allows Plessey to rapidly bring to market its monolithic microLEDs. To help us achieve this, our latest acquisition of Aixtron’s AIX G5+ C planetary system combines outstanding on-wafer uniformity and run-to-run performance at the lowest cost of ownership – aspects that are critical for efficient high-volume GaN-on-Si microLED displays.”