Newsletter—October 2014
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Are all Exits, Entrances and are all Entrances, Exits?

Message from TowerJazz CEO, Russell Ellwanger

No Entrance. No Exit.

The riddle is solvable solely depending on one's intent.

A few years ago, I came across a simple black and white line drawing of a person in a room. The room had two doors. Atop one door was a sign which read, "No Exit" and atop the other door was a sign that read, "No Entrance." At first I thought it was humorous and that it reflects feelings which most people, if not all people, have at times—feelings of being trapped in something with no allowable way out.

The drawing 'stayed with me' and I pondered if every exit is an entrance to something new, and if every entrance is an exit from something old. This seems logical, but is it a universal truth? I think it is.

If one truly wishes to exit from an undesirable behavior or habit, it appears to be impossible without replacing it with something desirable, or hence entering something new. It follows that if one wishes and indeed enters into the new desirable behavior, he or she must exit the old undesirable one. BUT this did not directly answer the riddle of how the person could leave the room and not violate the rules imposed by the signs.

The Solution
To solve the riddle, the person must either go through the door marked, "No Exit" with no intent to exit, or through the door marked, "No Entrance" with no intent to enter. In this manner, the riddle is solvable solely depending on one's intent.

What does this mean?
In order to progress in many aspects of life, including business, at times we need to view our situation as if in a room with the aforementioned doors and intently ponder which one to go through.

At times we do not need to leave where we are. We are doing well, and pleased with our efforts and results. However, we may desire further growth. In such cases, we can enter something new and enabling through the "No Exit" door for we are not exiting at all, but rather entering new vistas for greater growth.

To the opposite, there are times when things are just not working; times when we need to change and leave some things behind. When exiting is the overriding drive, we need to choose the "No Entrance" door. In these situations, we know we must get out of something not because we know exactly what we wish to enter, but because we need to be free of a burden in order to be inspired to know what we should enter next, and then QUICKLY decide, take action and “enter.” If this does not happen quickly, the risk of backsliding is high.

How This Applies to TowerJazz
At TowerJazz, we have had many cycles of:

  1. Exiting the old and entering the new
  2. Being pleased with our activities, not wishing to change our core values and customer partnered achievements, but indeed wishing to add to our core foundation to become stronger and enable greater partnerships
  3. Identifying and stopping processes/procedures/activities that are non-accretive to our goals and values, then urgently focusing and determining which new door to enter—and indeed, entering it.

These three routes are most successful when driven through and aligned with valued customer input. We thank you for your partnership and enabling us to constantly improve and grow.

Technical Global Symposium (TGS) Worldwide Events

This year, we are co-hosting our TGS events with TowerJazz Panasonic Semiconductor Co., (TPSCo), our enterprise with Panasonic Corporation.

Technical Global Symposium (TGS)

At these events, we are sharing our business strategy and latest developments which include increased capacity and expanded offerings in Japan through TPSCo. To date, we have already held two successful events in China and Europe with over 150 attendees from nearly 90 companies.

In July, we held our 2nd TGS in China. Along with our manufacturing excellence, we focused on our RF and power management technology offerings which make up the majority of our business in China. At the event, several new business opportunities were initiated.

In September, we hosted our first TGS in Europe. Attendance was very good and there was great interest in hearing more about TPSCo as well as our CMOS image sensor and power management offerings. Attendees appreciated the opportunity to have face-to-face meetings with fab representatives and to get a good sense of the company’s culture, “especially its openness to work with customers.”

2014 TGS Europe Keynote by Russell Ellwanger
TGS Europe Keynote by Russell Ellwanger

In November and December, we will host TGS events in the US and Japan, respectively. We expect to garner more exposure for our process capabilities as well as TPSCo’s advanced technology offerings. These conferences also provide an opportunity to meet TowerJazz and TPSCo executives as well as industry experts and leaders.

At our upcoming TGS events, we will present keynotes from our CEO, Russell Ellwanger, who will share our plans for further strategic growth, technology leadership and capacity expansion. In addition, TPSCo CEO, Guy Eristoff will present additional capabilities provided to our customers through three fabs in Japan (two 200mm and one 300mm) offering leading edge 45nm CMOS, 65nm RF CMOS and 65nm 1.12um pixel technologies.

At our US event, we are pleased to welcome Bill McClean, President of IC Insights to offer an industry overview and outlook. We will also provide updates on our design enablement along with proven application presentations from our customers.

TGS event sponsors, the leading EDA vendors and tool providers in the industry, will provide demos for solutions to address the design needs of our mutual customers. Sponsors this year include: Cadence, FlipChip, GDSI, Keysight Technologies, Mentor Graphics, National Instruments, PacTech, Photronics, Presto Engineering, Silvaco, SST-Novocell, Synopsys, and Tanner EDA.

Financial Highlights
Q2 2014

Revenues of $234.1 million

  • Increase of 87% YoY and 76% quarter-over-quarter (QoQ)
  • Organic (non Micron & Panasonic) growth of 20% YoY and 11% QoQ
  • Record number of mask sets (representing new products entering the fabs)
    • - Up 80% from 130 in the second quarter of 2013


  • Mid range guidance of $225 million
    • 70% YoY growth
    • First quarter to realize no revenues from Micron, as compared to ~$30M/quarter recently
  • Reflect 20% YoY and 13% QoQ core revenue growth (excluding Micron & Panasonic)

Revenue Growth Year-over-Year (YoY)

TowerJazz 2014 Q1 - Revenue Growth Year-over-Year TowerJazz 2014 Q2 - Revenue Growth Year-over-Year

Highlights from TowerJazz Panasonic Semiconductor Co. (TPSCo)

TPSCo was established this past April as a joint venture between TowerJazz, who owns 51% and Panasonic, who holds 49%. Through this partnership, TowerJazz has access to increased capacity at TPSCo’s three manufacturing facilities in Japan with 85,000 8-inch equivalent wafers per month.

Technology nodes span from 0.5µm down to 45nm. Over 120 qualified process flows focus on areas such as high dynamic range image sensors (CIS and CCD), integrated power devices (BCD, SOI, and LDMOS), high frequency silicon RFCMOS and high reliability automotive processing standards. In addition, TPSCo offers up front circuit design services in partnership with TowerJazz Netanya Design Center or Panasonic Nagaokakyo design group, as well as back end OSAT service in house at TPSCo or through its special relationship with UTAC.

In the few months since TPSCo has been formed, the company has already achieved several significant TPSCo design and TOPS customer wins. Of note, active projects since April include multiple CMOS image sensor designs at 65nm, multiple CMOS with integrated NVM devices at 0.13µm and multiple power devices from 0.25µm to 0.4µm. TPSCo will commence volume manufacturing with its first external customer in October 2014 – just seven months after inception of the company.

Additionally, TPSCo is in the final stages of closing negotiations on nine other major projects from 0.45µm to 45nm.

One of the most exciting projects TPSCo is currently working on is with Himax Imaging. Himax chose to partner with TPSCo for its next generation CIS product targeted at the China handphone camera market. Himax is using TPSCo’s state of the art 1.12µm pixel architecture.

This CIS platform includes advanced 65nm CIS-special process features such as advanced ultra-deep photodiode implantation, 32nm pitch Metal 1 design rules, low z-height 2 stage light pipe technology and advanced generation color filters and micro-lenses technology. These features allow the TPSCo pixel to achieve a world leading 74% peak green quantum efficiency with angular sensitivity of 65% at +/- 40degrees, and a dark current of only 6.5 electrons per second at 60 degrees Centigrade.

This CIS platform includes advanced 65nm CIS-special process features such as advanced ultra-deep photodiode implantation, 32nm pitch Metal 1 design rules, low z-height 2 stage light pipe technology and advanced generation color filters and micro-lenses technology. These features allow the TPSCo pixel to achieve a world leading 74% peak green quantum efficiency with angular sensitivity of 65% at +/- 40degrees, and a dark current of only 6.5 electrons per second at 60 degrees Centigrade.

By the second half of 2015, TowerJazz's TS18PM (Power Management) technology will be qualified at TPSCo in support of our customer’s business continuity plans.

A detailed overview of TPSCo will be presented by the company’s CEO, Guy Eristoff at TowerJazz & TPSCo’s upcoming Technical Global Symposium (TGS) events in the US and Japan, November 19 and December 16, 2014, respectively. According to Eristoff, “We look forward to getting the word out to our customers regarding the significant benefits of working with TPSCo for analog, imaging, power/power management and high reliability/automotive design needs. TPSCo has over 30 years of heritage in these areas and over 120 qualified process flows available for foundry offerings. Additionally, by the second half of 2015, TowerJazz's TS18PM (Power Management) technology will be qualified at TPSCo in support of our customer’s business continuity plans. While we are already seeing significant customer interest and traction adopting TPSCo wafer processing technologies, we are always looking to partner with additional customers.”

New TowerJazz Series of Technical and Design Webinars

Webinars help customers shorten learning curve and maximize performance of products designed in TowerJazz technologies

In July, we started offering a series of webinars to provide our customers with online tutorials on our technical offerings and design enablement capabilities.

TowerJazz SBC18H3 PDK training

TowerJazz SBC18H3 PDK training

This first video tutorial is based on frequently asked questions and is available for our existing customers.

It focuses on the TowerJazz SBC18H3 (270GHz SiGe BiCMOS) PDK, and is hosted by Dr. Samir Chaudhry, Director of Design Enablement. Dr. Chaudhry provides audio and visual guidance navigating through a live PDK session.

The training is targeted for both existing and new designers as well as layout engineers working with TowerJazz SiGe BiCMOS technologies. It is available to anyone with access to the SBC18H3 PDK on the TowerJazz customer portal.

TowerJazz ESD Webinar

TowerJazz ESD Offering

This recorded webinar focuses on the TowerJazz ESD Offering which enables easy and safe design for ESD production and the flexibility required for specific needs.

It is hosted by Dr. Efraim Aharoni, Principal Engineer, ESD Team Leader and Mr. Roda Kanawati, ESD Expert and Power Management Device Engineer. Dr. Aharoni focuses on our general ESD offering while Mr. Kanawati describes the ESD solutions available for Power Management design.

The webinar is targeted for IC designers interested in learning more about essential ESD design aids provided by TowerJazz. If you are interested in viewing our ESD webinar visit

The live presentation took place on August 7, 2014. Nearly 60 different customers participated from over 15 countries.

We will be offering more webinars and tutorials on various topics. Upcoming webinars will be posted on the TowerJazz website, Our customers will receive evites, so please stay tuned!

Smart Phones and Devices
Technology Focus

TowerJazz SOI Process Offering

The increasing RF silicon content in smartphones and other devices is fueling the high demand for RF technologies, especially our SOI offering.

Dual Sourcing Capability
We recently announced qualification of our Migdal Haemek facility (Fab 2) for our bulk CMOS controller process platform (CA18) and our SOI switch process platform (CS18) to provide dual sourcing capability, doubling our capacity for these technologies which target RF front-end modules (FEMs). Specifically, CA18 is used for power amplifier (PA) bias control and CS18 is used for antenna and band switches.

To date, over 30 products have been taped out to Migdal HaEmek and initial wafer production has begun. The product pipeline remains strong and is now feeding this factory as well as Newport Beach.

Expanded R&D
Our R&D effort has also expanded with an R&D team established at each site to take advantage of local talent accelerating the roadmap and ensuring we continue to provide our customers a technology advantage in addition to increased supply flexibility.

While sharing many process modules with 180nm bulk CMOS, the thin-film SOI platform features 2.5V devices customized for low-loss, high isolation RF switches.

Optional high voltage MIM capacitors and 1.2V CMOS support antenna tuning and low-noise amplifier applications respectively. SOI on high resistivity substrates provides excellent RF isolation for customers working on FEMs for wireless communication products. Particularly for RF switches, thin device silicon layers result in low junction capacitance which is favorable for achieving high isolation.

SOI Applications
Some customers leverage our SiGe BiCMOS technologies on SOI to integrate improved RF switching capabilities and achieve better isolation among circuit blocks. Some also use thick film SOI for high voltage applications such as MEMS. The silicon layer in SOI is used to fabricate beams for electro-mechanical structures and devices, e.g. MEMS resonators.

The end markets which are growth drivers for our SOI-based services are smart phones as each generation has required increasing numbers of RF ports to support multiple standards and functions e.g. 3G, 4G, 802.11, diversity antenna. The need for longer handset battery life is driving implementation of RF-SOI based antenna tuner products to improve antenna efficiency.

Advantages of SOI
There are advantages in moving to SOI-based technologies. In some markets such as FEMs, the performance advantages of SOI are required to enable these RF products in CMOS; bulk technologies simply can’t provide the required isolation and low capacitance to meet the most demanding 4G/LTE specifications. Thicker film SOI can support SiGe bipolar devices with significantly lower collector-to-substrate capacitance than their bulk counterparts. In high voltage products, SOI dielectric isolation can simplify the design process, reduce latch-up risk, and allow a much more compact design than junction-isolated technologies.

SOI, particularly for RF, is a significant focus for us. We continue to invest in new technology and propagating the technology we have to multiple factories to increase capacity available to our customers. While RF dominates our SOI consumption, we also see a good future for SOI in power management, MEMS and other sensor applications.

For more information on our SOI offering, please contact Paul Hurwitz, Device Technology Manager at

Executive Roundtable
Mr. Keiji Jono

Mr. Keiji Jono

Vice President, Fab 3 Operations Manager

In this issue, we feature a message from Mr. Keiji Jono, who serves as Vice President, Fab 3 Operations Manager (Newport Beach, CA USA) since August 2014. He previously held the position of Fab Manager at TowerJazz Japan, Ltd. since June 2011. Prior to this, he served in various engineering management positions such as Fab Manager, Process Engineering Department Manager, and Diffusion Section Manager at Micron Japan, Ltd. Below, Mr. Keiji will discuss his new role as Fab Operations Manager in Fab 3, Newport Beach.

TowerJazz currently operates six manufacturing facilities on three continents: Fab 1 and Fab 2 located in Migdal Haemek, Israel, Fab 3 located in Newport Beach, California, and three additional factories in the Hokuriku region of Japan through TowerJazz Panasonic Semiconductor Company (TPSCo), a venture with Panasonic Corporation. In all of our worldwide fabs, our main focus is to work closely with our customers in an effort to meet their manufacturing demand and needs.

As new products are generated in the market, our customers are demanding new technology to support their latest products. The Newport Beach factory is known for its SiGe process platform and has invested in its SOI (Silicon On Insulator) offering to enable customers’ next-generation products ahead of their competitors, and the demand for this technology is growing rapidly.

We are now investing capex and resources in order to support this strong demand.

As we continue to grow and mature in our global operations and presence, the need for flexible and accurate execution becomes more critical. The operations team is engaged with our business units and customer support teams to support the needs of our customers. We put great focus on cross qualification of our specialized technologies between our worldwide facilities to provide flexibility to our customers. The installment of technologies in the different sites, and the ability to provide our customers with dual sourcing between the sites make the need for alignment even more critical, but in parallel enables us to provide extended capacity and flexibility to our customers.

This is also important for our customers in terms of BCP (Business Continuity Planning).

Although we are expanding with new technology and global activities, quality is the number one priority at any given time. One of our company’s principles is to DEMAND QUALITY AND EXCELLENCE IN EVERYTHING WE DO. We build our customers’ trust by instilling these values in all of our employees.

We will continue in our pursuit of quality and excellence by adding manufacturing capabilities anticipating our customer needs, and improving our ability to support them. I very much look forward to my role in the Newport Beach facility.

Participation at Industry Events


On June 2-4, 2014, TowerJazz participated at DAC (Design Automation Conference) USA 2014 held in San Francisco CA, providing several presentations and demonstrations with its major design partners including: Agilent Technologies, Apache Design Solutions, Cadence Design Systems, Mentor Graphics, and Tanner EDA.

TowerJazz has participated at DAC for the past few years to showcase its technologies and solutions for best design first time success.

This year, TowerJazz also presented its new enterprise, TowerJazz Panasonic Semiconductor Co. (TPSCo) which provides opportunities for its customers to utilize additional capacity as well as leading edge 45nm CMOS, 65nm RF CMOS and 65nm 1.12um pixel technologies. Over 200 leading companies and over 4K people joined the conference this year.



On June 1 – 6, TowerJazz attended the IEEE International Microwave Symposium (IMS) in Tampa Bay, Florida. This conference is very large with thousands of visitors, and caters to technologists involved in all aspects of microwave theory and practice. All of TowerJazz’s key RF and HPA commercial and A&D customers attend this conference and it was a nice opportunity to network with them and to learn more about the latest market trends/technologies. TowerJazz’s booth was located in “Agilent Alley” to showcase our partnership which provides IC design and manufacturing solutions for our mutual customers.

Also at IMS, Ed Priesler, Director of Technology Development at TowerJazz participated on a panel called, "Fabless Design: Got Any Problem with That?" which discussed practical aspects of the fabless IC design model. The discussion gave the audience new perspectives on what the future may bring to the fabless design industry. TowerJazz was pleased to provide and represent the specialty foundry viewpoint.

Social Responsibility

TowerJazz launches “Internal College” program with Ruppin Academic Center in Israel

At the request of TowerJazz CEO, Mr. Russell Ellwanger (Ruppin Honorary Fellow in 2012), a collaboration with Ruppin Academic Center in Israel was initiated to build a training program designed for TowerJazz middle managers.

The first course, “Introduction to Industrial Engineering and Management” started in June of this year. There are 19 students who take part in this program, all from production lines in TowerJazz Operations.

The program is comprehensive, and includes six academic courses covering industrial engineering material (essential to operation managers), provided by Ruppin Academic Center. Each course has its own separate guidelines and final exam requirements as well as offers more general managerial skills provided by the TowerJazz training team.

The graduates will gain 12 points that will help them continue and work towards finishing their bachelor's degree.

Classes are held at the TowerJazz company site in Migdal Haemek, and most of the students are enthusiastic and excited to return to school after many years.

TowerJazz Internal College Program
Getting to Know Us
Mr. Yasu Sugano

Mr. Yasu Sugano

Expert Engineer, Design Support

In each issue, we introduce one of our employees who works with our valued customers in some capacity. We delve into their professional roles and responsibilities as well as some details on their home life, hobbies and travels. At TowerJazz, we encourage work-life balance for our employees. We are a large, multi-cultural family and each employee is unique and brings different characteristics and experience. It is our goal to share a bit of our company and employee culture with you. In this issue, we feature Mr. Yasu Sugano.

Q. Please tell us about your position, focus areas, etc.

A. My current position focuses on technically supporting Japan customers from the beginning of the design feasibility study through the completion of tape out. For special projects that require customization of our process, device, design kit, and/or IP, I play a role in understanding our customers’exact needs and proposing the best solutions by serving as an interface between our customers and our R&D teams. My primary focus has been on CMOS image sensor and mixed-signal/CMOS technologies, and lately I started to support power management technology as well.

Q: What do you enjoy about your position and what challenges you?

A: I enjoy building relationships with and learning from our customers and TowerJazz experts through technical interactions. It is a great honor to work with such talented people. My biggest challenge is balancing how deep to dig into certain technology knowledge/skills/domains with how widely to cover various large technology fields. It can also be challenging at times to support multiple projects from multiple customers at the same time.

Q: What is your focus this year from a business standpoint?

A: My main focus is on learning TPSCo’s advanced technologies (especially CIS) to help bring in more projects.

   I am also focused on acquiring more in-depth technical knowledge and skills as well as a more comprehensive understanding of our offering and methodology in order to help customers to fully utilize our advanced customizable technologies and tools.

Q: What are some of your hobbies?

A: Reading and relaxing in hot springs

Q: What is your favorite travel destination?

A: Resorts in Hawaii and Guam – not too far from Japan, good to stay with family

Featured News
The Wall Street Journal

Global Invacom Chooses TowerJazz’s SiGe BiCMOS Technology for its New Revolutionary Chipset

For the first time, satellite TV equipment makers can design one programmable system for all global markets

TowerJazz and Global Invacom, announced today the production of a software configurable satellite TV chipset for global applications enabled by TowerJazz’s advanced SiGe BiCMOS (SBC18) technologies and design enablement services. “We selected TowerJazz as our manufacturing partner for their ability to produce low-noise, high-gain, wide-band and linear SiGe devices. Also, their design enablement platform complements their sophisticated technology and includes silicon verified, highly scalable device models, robust physical design tools for up front design optimization, and their design support infrastructure, to enable a quick and accurate design cycle,” said Malcolm Burrell, Global Invacom’s Technical Director.

Business Tech

TowerJazz Teams Up With Korean Institute to Develop Image Sensor

TowerJazz has revealed the first product resulting from a five-year linkup with a Korean research institute that could give it a growing presence in the expanding field of medical imaging technology. The company said its collaboration with the government-funded Korea Electrotechnology Research Institute (KERI) had led to the development of an image sensor, capable of converting an image into an electronic signal in devices such as X-ray machines.The sensor is expected to have annual sales of more than $10 million, relatively small in the context of TowerJazz's total sales. But it is potentially significant in the context of a global market for medical, dental and veterinary X-ray systems that reached $10 billion in 2012 and should increase to $12 billion by 2017, according to IMS Research.

Compound Semi

TowerJazz Qualifies Additional Factory to Support RF Front-End Module Demand

TowerJazz has qualified its Migdal HaEmek (Fab 2) for bulk CMOS controller process platforms and RF SOI switches to augment its existing factory in Newport Beach, California. Initial wafer production has begun at the new fab. According to TowerJazz, the new factory has more than doubled its total wafer capacity for these technologies. So far, over 30 products have been produced at the new Migdal HaEmek factory. TowerJazz says its SOI technology (CS18) offers insertion loss, isolation and harmonics to support current and future generation RF products. TowerJazz points out its RFCMOS (both bulk and SOI) and SiGe BiCMOS technologies are ideally suited to benefit from the rapid proliferation of smartphones in addition to increasing RF data paths per phone.

Tech Time

Himax Imaging chooses TowerJazz Panasonic Semiconductor’s State of the Art 65nm process with Outstanding 1.12um Pixel for its Next Generation Cameras for Smart Phone Applications

TowerJazz and TowerJazz Panasonic Semiconductor Co., Ltd. (TPSCo) today announced its first major third party CMOS image sensor (CIS) customer, Himax Imaging, Inc., that is developing its next generation high end cameras for smart phone applications using TPSCo’s state of the art 1.12um-pixel CMOS image sensor (CIS) 65nm process. TPSCo’s CIS technology meets the growing demand for high dynamic range and signal to noise ratio optical sensors used in mobile, high-end photography, security, and surveillance applications. “By utilizing the advanced features of our 1.12um-pixel CIS 65nm process, Himax Imaging will offer evermore innovative technology to meet their customers’ — some of the world’s leading device manufacturers — growing demands for both high quality, yet cost-effective, cameras for high end smart phone applications,”said Guy Eristoff, CEO, TPSCo.

Yahoo Finance

TowerJazz and Triune Systems Announce Neo-Iso™ Products Ramping to Mass Production

Neo-Iso™ enables HVAC and home automation systems to reduce form factor, increase reliability and reduce cost

TowerJazz and Triune Systems announced that Triune has developed a proprietary isolated power and data technology using the TowerJazz TS18PM process on its state of the art 0.18um based power management platform. According to a report published by Transparency Market Research, the home automation market is expected to reach $16.4 billion by 2019, growing at a CAGR of 24.6% from 2014 to 2019. “We developed this unique and innovative isolated technology with TowerJazz because they offered the best process for our needs,” said Ross Teggatz, President of Triune Systems. “Our Neo-Iso™ technology further leverages TowerJazz’s processes to provide truly unique solutions that can drive exciting and differentiated home automation applications, and we look forward to developing several new products based on this technology.”