Evince gets Funding to Develop Diamond Semis

May 24, 2016 by Jeff Shepard

Earlier this month, Evince Technology closed the first half of a new round of equity investment by Business Angels. Together with a £230k Innovate UK award won last year, the investment secures the funding to that will allow the company to complete the next stage of its development program, Over the coming 12 months two prototype solid-state diamond electronic devices will be developed which fully demonstrate the potential of Evince's ground-breaking synthetic-diamond device technology.

Lead Investor, James Morton said, "Diamond’s potential as a critical component of the new electronic age of renewal energy and hybrid/electric transport is widely recognized. Our investor group consulted widely to confirm that Evince has a unique practical approach to realizing electronics using synthetic-diamond. Diamond offers the potential to yield devices able to perform 100x better than silicon and could therefore revolutionize electronics in applications across multiple, multi-billion dollar markets. Our decision to invest was based on a number of factors beyond the technology including the company’s professional approach; its strong patented IP; and, in particular, the rigorous development program it is embarking upon to deliver the first prototype solid-state diamond electronic devices.”

Evince Chairman, Phil Cammerman said, "The past year has seen Evince go through a sea change in the way we want to seek, engage and work with partners to take our technology to market. This is already starting to generate significant interest. After looking at various funding routes, we decided to go for the Angel option. The Angel group led by James brings not only investment but significant wisdom from their diverse background. However we are not being complacent and the books are still open for a second close of the current round. This additional money will allow the company to accelerate the development of additional prototypes and to expand engagement with potential partners."

Cammerman continued, “To make practical working devices in diamond, you need to start by tearing up the semiconductor rulebook. The first principle of working with diamond is that it is not a classical semiconductor - rather it's an electrical insulator with some phenomenal charge transport properties.

“Our technology takes diamond, one of the world's best electrical insulators, and turns it at will into a controllable conductor. We do this by exploiting one of diamond's unique properties, which is that it is virtually transparent to free electrons. This phenomenon is widely known and has been used to make switching devices in the past. To make such a device the free electrons were generated from an external source such as a hot filament (just as in a thermionic tube) and therefore needed to operate under a vacuum.”

Evince is developing a new family of completely solid-state devices that at their heart contain an embedded electron source in diamond. The family includes: Diodes; Electron Field Emission Triode (EFET); and Bi-directional Field Emission Transistor (BIFET).

Because they are based on diamond all of these devices will inherently offer high voltage, high current and high frequency capabilities with a robustness that cannot be matched by any other semiconductor technology. Also while other wide bandgap materials are often touted as being suitable for high temperature performance, only diamond has the necessary combination of electrical and thermo-mechanical properties needed to make devices able to operate up to 400 degrees C.