GT Advanced Technologies Inc. (NASDAQ: GTAT) announced it has acquired certain capital assets and intellectual property of Twin Creeks Technologies, Inc., a privately owned company that has developed an ion implanter technology that enables the production of lower cost thin substrates with minimal material (kerf) loss.
The assets were purchased from Twin Creeks’ lenders in a private sale for approximately $10 million and royalties that will be based on future sales.
GT expects that Twin Creeks’ unique Hyperion™ ion implanter technology will have broad application in the production of engineered substrates for power semiconductors and thin wafers for solar applications. In addition, GT expects to pursue the development of thin sapphire laminates for use in applications such as cover and touch screen devices. The Hyperion ion implanter has the potential to minimize, or in some cases eliminate, the need for wafering saws, which would significantly lower the cost of production.
The assets acquired by GT relate primarily to the Hyperion ion implanter as well as Twin Creeks’ portfolio of approximately 30 granted US patents and over 70 pending US and international patent applications. GT’s ion implanter engineering team will be based in Danvers, MA.
“Hyperion’s unique ion source and beamline design will enable a wide range of exfoliation applications in markets where thin silicon, silicon carbide, sapphire, germanium and other crystalline material substrates can enable breakthroughs in performance and cost," said Vikram Singh, executive vice president of advanced systems development. “Hyperion will enable the production of high throughput and optimum thickness substrates that can not be achieved with other ion implant technologies."
“The acquisition of these assets from Twin Creeks, coupled with our operational expertise and proven ability to commercialize innovative technology will allow us to develop a new line of products that can deliver advancements in performance and value in the core markets we serve as well as new markets that we have identified. We are particularly excited about the potential applications in the cover and touch screen markets,” said Tom Gutierrez, president and chief executive officer of GT. “This continues GT's strategic diversification into new and promising markets with technology that delivers superior value to customers over existing products currently available.”
GT expects to start the commercialization of this technology in late 2014.
The company will provide additional commentary on this technology during its webcasted presentation at the UBS Global Technology Conference tomorrow, November 15th at 10:00 am ET. The presentation will be webcast on a live and archived basis and can be accessed in the ‘Events and Presentations’ section of GT’s Investor Relations website at http://investor.gtat.com.