Sunday 14 Jul 2024
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KUALA LUMPUR (Feb 9): Global silicon wafer area shipments in 2021 increased 14% while wafer revenue rose 13% as compared to 2020, topping US$12 billion (about RM50.23 billion), to reach new all-time highs, said the US-based Semiconductor Equipment and Materials International (SEMI).

Silicon wafers are the fundamental building material for the majority of semiconductors, which are vital components of all electronic devices.

The highly engineered thin disks are produced in diameters of up to 12 inches and serve as the substrate material on which most semiconductor devices, or chips, are fabricated.

In a statement on its website on Tuesday (Feb 8), SEMI said the SEMI Silicon Manufacturers Group (SMG) reported in its year-end analysis of the silicon wafer industry that silicon shipments totalled 14,165 million square inches (MSI), compared with 12,407 MSI shipped in 2020, to meet surging broad-based demand for semiconductor devices and a wide variety of applications.

It said the 300mm, 200mm and 150mm wafer sizes all saw strong demand.

Wafer revenue reached US$12.62 billion, surpassing the previous record of US$12.13 billion set in 2007.

Neil Weaver, the outgoing chairman of SEMI SMG (2018-2021) and vice-president of product development and applications engineering at Shin Etsu Handotai America, said the robust year-on-year growth in silicon wafer area shipments and revenue reflected heavy dependence of the modern economy on silicon wafers.

“Wafers are the engine of digital transformation and new technologies that are reshaping how we live and work,” he said.

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