The company, established in September 2012 and spin-off of the University of Milano Bicocca from the very beginning, originates from one technological breakthrough for semiconductor integration in silicon obtained by Prof. Leo Miglio (CEO) and Prof. Hans von Känel (ETH Zürich, CTO), within the L-NESS inter-university center.
It aims at developing, licensing, or selling innovative technologies manufacturing semiconductor structures and devices, with specific application to thick-film systems, such as high-efficiency photovoltaic cells, imaging detectors and power electronics devices.
The company received Seed Money financing from Italian venture capital investors and one industrial partner. The targets of the first year are to provide one demonstrator of Ge/GaAs-, or Ge/GaAs/InGaP-based PV cells for satellite applications, and the proof of concept that SiC-based power devices can be integrated in silicon.
PileGrowth Tech is characterized by a strong link to international semiconductor laboratories, both in academia and in the industry. Actually, contracts with the University of Milano Bicocca, Politecnico of Milano, the IMM-CNR Institutes of Catania and Bologna, PV cell manufacturers, such as CESI in Milano and ENE in Brussels, and ETC srl, SiC process developer in Catania, are already running.
A strong scientific collaborations with Swiss federal institutions, such as ETH Zürich, CSEM SA (Swiss Center for Electronics and Micromachining) Neuchatel, and EMPA (Federal Institute of Materials Certification) are particularly active, within a collaboration for developing a new Ge-based X-ray imaging detector, integrated on a Si CMOS chip.