IBM and Samsung have announced they will collaborate on basic research into new semiconductor materials, manufacturing processes and other technologies. The agreement calls for the two companies to jointly develop new semiconductor process technology that can be used in a broad range of applications — from smart phone handsets to communications infrastructure.

For the first time, Samsung researchers will join IBM scientists in the Semiconductor Research Alliance in the USA, where researchers will investigate new materials and transistor structures, as well as innovative interconnect and packaging solutions for next-generation technology nodes. The research developments from this joint activity are planned to enable the delivery of silicon solutions that are optimized for performance, power consumption and size.

“Collaborative innovation will be critical if the semiconductor industry is to continue driving new forms of consumer electronics and new methods of computing,” said Michael Cadigan, general manager, IBM Microelectronics. “That’s why we’re excited to have Samsung scientists working with us at the most fundamental stages of the R&D process.”

The agreement also renews IBM and Samsung’s joint process development agreement (JDA) to multiple nodes starting at 20nm. IBM and Samsung plan to develop advanced technologies for foundry customers, enabling high-performance, energy-efficient chips at 20nm and beyond. To further enhance the JDA, Samsung’s Semiconductor R&D center will also participate in development contribution.

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