The Week In Review: Manufacturing

Fab tool spending forecast; export controls; scholarships for semi engineers; D2S’ new VP.

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Front-end fab equipment spending is projected to increase by 20% in 2015 to $42 billion, according to SEMI. In 2015, equipment spending could mark a historical record high, surpassing the previous peak years of 2007 ($39 billion) and 2011 ($40 billion). In 2014, the report predicts growth of approximately 21% for front-end fab equipment spending, for total spending of $34.9 billion.

SEMI reported that worldwide semiconductor manufacturing equipment billings reached $9.62 billion in the second quarter of 2014. The billings figure is 5% lower than the first quarter of 2014 and 28% higher than the same quarter a year ago.

SEMI announced that it has successfully appealed to the U.S. government to review the validity of current export controls on semiconductor etch equipment. The U.S. Department of Commerce published a notice in the Federal Register announcing the launch of the first Foreign Availability Assessment in more than 20 years.

QuickLogic’s next-generation ultra-low power sensor hub is sampling. It is based on GlobalFoundries’ low-power, 65nm process technology.

GlobalFoundries announced the “GlobalFoundries Undergraduate Research Scholarship,” a new scholarship recognizing engineering students interested in careers in the semiconductor industry. The company will fund undergraduate research opportunities and intern scholars through the Semiconductor Research Corp.’s Education Alliance.

Yoshio Tanaka has joined D2S as a vice president. He will drive new business development in Japan.

Applied Materials announced that its board has approved a quarterly cash dividend of $0.10 per share payable on the company’s common stock.

Toshiba and SanDisk celebrated the opening of the second phase of the No. 5 semiconductor fabrication facility (Fab 5) and the start of construction of the new No. 2 fabrication facility (Fab 2) at Yokkaichi Operations, Toshiba’s NAND flash memory plant in Mie prefecture, Japan.

Microsemi has signed an agreement to acquire Centellax, a supplier of high-speed analog and RF semiconductor products.

Intel has signed a definitive agreement to buy over 1,400 patents and patent applications from an affiliate of The Gores Group, which obtained the patents in the Chapter 11 bankruptcy of Powerwave Technologies.