Created in 2000 by spining-off from Philips, OMMIC is a leading industrial company specialized in III-V semiconductors. These semiconductor materials are the basis of the electronic components that are used in a growing number of everyday objects, such as computer and telecom equipment or autonomous cars. Semiconductors manufactured by OMMIC therefore find applications in telecoms (transceivers) and the automotive industry, but also in space (observation satellites, satellite communications) and defence (radars, electronic warfare).

In 2017, the company invested in a new pilot line for millimetre wave 5G production. This new clean room now provides OMMIC with a production capacity of 2 million chips per year and makes this company a major player in the deployment of 5G.


Interview with Dr. Marc Marillier, team leader at OMMIC.

What is the greatest strength of OMMIC?

OMMIC has been at the forefront of R&D in the fields of III-V epitaxy and integrated circuit technologies for nearly 50 years. We are the only foundry in Europe offering a complete service including epitaxy which is definitely a key asset, and the main reason for us to achieve the state-of-the-art performances we demonstrate in papers but also (and mostly) to our customers. In essence, if you control your epi, you control the world! and we do. This is why OMMIC is currently the only foundry in the world offering 6-inch GaN-on-Sillicon (GaN/Si) wafers.

In Ultrawave, we proved to be capable of offering solution to bands in the sub-Terahertz band which is a great challenge. We are able to do so because all our team (engineers, designers, technicians …) work on the same site. This proximity allows us to obtain the best human communication, relations, and ultimately leads to better technology, while maintaining yield and reliability.


What are the main challenges that you face in your company?

One of OMMIC’s main challenges is to be forward-thinking. We must always satisfy the needs of our customers in order to face an increasingly demanding market. They must be leaders in their field thanks to our cutting-edge technology.

That’s why, we plan to fully replace our GaAs p-HEMT solutions by our GaN/Si technology, offering the best III-V RF solutions.

Our engineers have designed a GaN process that is very comparable to traditional GaAs p-HEMTs. It features great low noise performance, good linearity, with 5 times GaAs’ power density. For our customer, it is a no brainer: all must become GaN.  The real challenge today is to satisfy everybody as our design team is limited!


What do you think is the most interesting fact about the ULTRAWAVE project?

ULTRAWAVE is a H2020 project. This means uniting the skills of various professionals from different fields and jointly increase European knowledge which is always exciting. In this particular project, we had the opportunity to work on high-capacity 5G backhaul systems, and get a first draft about tomorrow’s potential needs. By having real systems specifications, we can better understand system maker needs and develop processes fully optimised for backhaul application. This is what we have done in ULTRAWAVE; developing a 40 nm gate length metamorphic process, dedicated to low noise is the sub-Terahertz range: the D004IH.