CHICAGO, ILLINOIS – March 2, 2004 – Today, Akzo Nobel-High Purity Metalorganics (AN-HPMO) and EpiWorks, Inc., a leading developer and manufacturer of compound semiconductor epitaxial wafers, announced a joint development program.

Under the agreement, the EpiWorks team will demonstrate the growth of various phosphorous-based epitaxial layers for laser applications using AN-HPMO’s metalorganic Group V (MO-V) sources in a production environment.

The traditional approach to growing laser structures using MOCVD has been using gaseous hydrides for the Group V elements such as arsine and phosphine. AN-HPMO’s MO-V liquid sources like TBA and TBP provide distinct advantages in safety, maintenance and process conditions. A direct comparison of lasers grown using Group V gases and MO-V liquids will be made. Material and device quality as well as reactor performance will be compared.

The device structure is a previously published red laser design, intended to operate at 680 nm. This wavelength range was chosen because it enables key applications in consumer products, such as DVDs. The structures to be grown include all the materials of interest for LED/ Solar cell/Laser producers such as different compositions of AlInGaP and InGaP.

“We are very excited to develop a new process for a challenging technology. Red lasers are not only difficult to demonstrate, but they are particularly difficult to manufacture because of the large amount of phosphorous typically generated using phosphine. By working with Akzo Nobel, we hope to offer our customers a unique process for their products and greater dependability.” said Quesnell Hartmann, President of EpiWorks.

“This collaboration should give us actual device data for epitaxial structures grown on production machines using our EPI-PROOF® grade TBP” said Dr. Nada El-Zein, Epitaxial Specialist and Technical Marketing Manger of AN-HPMO. She adds “We hope to prove that TBP is the safe alternative to gaseous Phosphine and that it provides distinct advantages in reactor maintenance, material quality and device performance.”

EPI-PROOF® qualification is an integral part of AN-HPMO’s Total Quality Management system, and is designed to provide a certification of the product quality that is more sensitive than direct chemical analysis and more meaningful to their customers.

Akzo Nobel-High Purity Metalorganics manufactures and globally supplies a full range of metalorganics of the highest purity and consistency for III-V and II-VI epitaxy. To learn more about AN-HPMO visit www.akzonobel-hpmo.com.

EpiWorks, Inc. develops and manufactures compound semiconductor epitaxial wafers for optical applications and high-speed communication systems. To learn more about EpiWorks, visit www.epiworks.com.

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EpiWorks, Inc. develops and manufactures compound semiconductor epitaxial wafers for application in optical components and high-speed communication systems. The company’s products provide these applications additional performance, such as greater bandwidth, higher power efficiency and better reliability. EpiWorks’ business model includes high-level customer interaction and co-development to rapidly advanced its customers’ technology capability and product performance.