APPLAUSE – an ECSEL Joint Undertaking project

The Fraunhofer Institute for Microelectronic Circuits and Systems (IMS) has launched a new project, “Advanced packaging for photonics, optics and electronics for low-cost manufacturing in Europe” simply called APPLAUSE. The consortium has got 31 European partners from 11 countries, represented by key players in the fields of electronics packaging, optics and photonics, equipment supply and testing. APPLAUSE will enhance European expertise in advanced packaging and assembly to develop new tools, methods and processes for high volume manufacturing.

Logo of the APPLAUSE-Project
Logo of the APPLAUSE-Project

The APPLAUSE project is coordinated by ICOS Vision Systems N.V. (Belgium), a division of KLA Corporation. The 34 million euros total budget for the three-year project is cofunded by Horizon 2020 and national funding agencies and industries, as a part of the Electronics Components and Systems for European Leadership Joint Undertaking (ECSEL JU). The consortium includes 12 large enterprises, 11 small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and 8 research and technology organisations. The project focuses on advanced optics, photonics and electronics packaging for multimodal sensing systems. High volume manufacturing is enabled by strong contribution of testing, process control and manufacturing equipment. 

The technologies gained feed to six industrial application cases which include a substantially smaller 3D integrated ambient light sensor for mobile and wearable applications (ams AG, Austria); a high performance, low cost, uncooled thermal IR sensor for automotive and surveillance applications (IDEAS, Norway); high speed datacom transceivers with reduced manufacturing costs (DustPhotonics, Israel); a flexible cardiac monitoring patch (Precordior, Finland); miniaturized cardiac implants with advanced monitoring capabilities (Cardiaccs, Norway); and an optical water measurement module with cost-effective packaging of components (Vaisala, Finland).

Fraunhofer IMS is participating in two use cases: 

• Post-CMOS processing of microbolometers for low-cost and high-performance thermal infrared sensors, used in automotive, safety and security.

• Development of biocompatible and hermetic chip-scale encapsulation for miniaturized cardiac implants. 

“This collaborative project builds the competitive edge of component and system development in Europe. We develop new capabilities and demonstrate their match to the future needs of European industries. This accelerates the manufacturing uptake of the new technologies and shortens time-to-market” per Paula Pennanen, project manager at Spinverse.

The expected project impacts targets to increase revenues for the project partners exceeding 300M€, by 2025. The new technologies developed in the project have the potential to increase the market share with additional access to new market segments for the industrial partners. The strategic, high level objectives of APPLAUSE include (1) developing new tools, methods, and processes for automated mass manufacturing and advanced packaging for the semiconductor, optics and photonics industries, (2) bringing advanced packaging and high volume manufacturing concepts to optics and photonics via six industrial use cases, and (3) increasing the competitiveness and global market share of European semiconductor industry, especially the manufacturing equipment, packaging and assembly industries.

More information:

APPLAUSE coordinator: Moritz Stoerring, ICOS (a division of KLA Corp),
APPLAUSE coordination support: Paula Pennanen, Spinverse,
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Project partners:

ICOS Vision Systems N.V. (a division of KLA Corporation), Afore Oy, ams AG, Almae Technologies, Besi Austria GmbH, Besi Netherlands BV, DISCO HI-TEC EUROPE GmbH, EV Group E.THALLNER GmbH, JSR Micro NV, Pac Tech - Packaging Technologies GmbH, SEMILAB FELVEZETO FIZIKAI LABORATORIUM RESZVENYTARSASAG, VAISALA Oyj, Würth Elektronik GmbH & Co. KG, Albis Optoelectronics AG, ADVANCED PACKAGING CENTER BV, Cardiaccs AS, DustPhotonics LTD, Oy Everon Ab, Integrated Detector Electronics AS (IDEAS), Nuromedia GmbH, OSYPKA AG, Precordior OY, RoodMicrotec GmbH, Aalto University, CSEM SA, Institute of Electronics and Computer Science (EDI), Fraunhofer Institute for Electronic Nano Systems (ENAS), Fraunhofer Institute for Microelectronic Circuits and Systems (IMS), Fraunhofer Institute for Reliability and Microintegration (IZM), INTERUNIVERSITAIR MICRO-ELECTRONICA CENTRUM (IMEC), STICHING IMEC the Netherlands, University of Turku, University of South-Eastern Norway (USN).

APPLAUSE has received funding from the ECSEL JU under grant agreement No 826588. The JU receives support from the European Union’s Horizon  2020 research and innovation programme as well as Belgium, Germany, Netherlands, Finland, Austria, France, Hungary, Latvia, Norway, Switzerland and Israel.



The “Electronic Components and Systems for European Leadership” (ECSEL) is a Joint Undertaking established in June 2014 by the European Union Council Regulation No 561/2014. The ECSEL Joint Undertaking - the Public-Private Partnership for Electronic Components and Systems – funds Research, Development and Innovation projects for world-class expertise in these key enabling technologies, essential for Europe's competitive leadership in the era of the digital economy. Through the ECSEL JU, the European industry, SMEs and Research and Technology Organisations are supported and co-financed by 30 ECSEL Participating States and the European Union. A total of approximately 346M€ European and national grants have been awarded to proposals with total eligible costs of about 748M€ arising from the ECSEL JU, making another step forward in the 5B€ programme to be supported by ECSEL JU. Read more about the ECSEL JU programme.  


About the Fraunhofer IMS

The Fraunhofer Institute for Microelectronic Circuits and Systems IMS in Duisburg is a globally recognized research institution for the development of innovative technologies and processes in microelectronics, smart sensor technologies and embedded artificial intelligence. In the business units "Health”, “Industry”, “Mobility”, “Space and Security”, scientists and engineers create innovative and sustainable solutions for the industry, the service sector and the society - for more than 30 years.


The Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft, headquartered in Germany, is the world’s leading applied research organization. With its focus on developing key technologies that are vital for the future and enabling the commercial exploitation of this work by business and industry, Fraunhofer plays a central role in the innovation process. As a pioneer and catalyst for groundbreaking developments and scientific excellence, Fraunhofer helps shape society now and in the future. Founded in 1949, the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft currently operates 75 institutes and research institutions throughout Germany. The majority of the organization’s 29,000 employees are qualified scientists and engineers, who work with an annual research budget of 2.8 billion euros. Of this sum, 2.4 billion euros are generated through contract research.