Plessey Playing For Big Stakes

Michael Le Goff, CEO of Plessey, told Future Horizons’ IEF2013 in Dublin, about the huge challenges and huge opportunities of being in the LED business.

On the one hand, he’s competing with Osram, Bridgelux, Toshiba and Samsung. On the other hand LEDs are expected to be a $200 billion a year annual market in 2020.

There are huge players in the market but we we first to market with GaN-on-silicon LEDs,” said Le Goff.

The best thing about the market is its immense potential. Between now snd 2020, it is expected that 182 billion LEDs will be required.

By 2020, LEDs are expected to represent 46% of the global lighting market sabing 5 trillion kWh of electricity representing 489 billion in energy costs.

Plessey’s GaN-on-Si on s ix inch wafers in a gully depreciated fab is a cheaper alternative than the SiC on 2″ and 4″ wafers and the sapphire substrates used by competitors.

Asked if his technology could compete with the 8″ GaN-on-silicon production of Toshia, Le Goff replied: “Certainly we see running on eight inch is better but it depends on which manufacturing assets you have available.” he added: “We have started experimentation on eight inch silicon substrates.”

Having entered the market this year, Plessey’s focus is now on product improvement and reduction in cost. Product improvement will come from making the die area more efficient. The cost asprstion is to get to $0.15 per 100 Lm by 2015. Currently it’s $0.25 per 100 Lm.

“Our challenge,” said Le Goff, ” is to make LED manufacture as high yielding as manufacturing a simple diode using existing, available semiconductor assets,”

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