Week In Review: Manufacturing, Test

7nm/5nm foundry battle; EUV pellicle partners; SiC/GaN.


TSMC posted mixed results for the second quarter. It also presented a mixed outlook for the third quarter, according to various reports.

TSMC and Samsung are in the midst of a foundry battle at 7nm and 5nm. “TSMC raised its 2019 capex outlook to over $11B, up from prior guidance of $10B-$11B. The increased capex is to support 5nm and 7nm ramps, with accelerated 5G investment and strong customer demand noted as drivers,” according to a research note from KeyBanc. “TSMC indicated that it is accelerating its 7nm and 5nm ramps due to high customer demand, although we believe it’s also due to Samsung aggressively courting customers at 7nm. This bodes well for semiconductor equipment companies, which should benefit from any arms race between the two foundries.”

Chinese smartphone maker Xiaomi has taken a 6% stake in chip designer VeriSilicon, according to various reports.

Toshiba Memory Holdings will change its name to Kioxia Holdings on Oct. 1. The name Kioxia (kee-ox-ee-uh) is a combination of the Japanese word kioku meaning “memory” and the Greek word “axia” meaning “value.”

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ASML posted mixed results for the quarter. “Our second-quarter sales came in within guidance and the gross margin came in above guidance, helped by improved EUV manufacturing results and higher field upgrade sales, which more than compensates the negative mix effect in comparison with Q1,” said ASML President and Chief Executive Peter Wennink. “For the remainder of the year we see further weakness in memory, while logic looks stronger. We expect that the increased demand in logic will compensate for the decreased demand in memory. The additional growth in logic is driven by accelerated investments in 7nm nodes and beyond.”

ASML will license its EUV pellicle assembly technology to Mitsui Chemicals. Mitsui Chemicals will assemble and sell pellicles in high-volume to lithography customers. In parallel, ASML will continue to develop next-generation pellicle membranes with its partners.

Entegris has acquired MPD Chemicals, a provider of advanced materials to the specialty chemical, technology, and life sciences industries.

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SEMI announced a memorandum of understanding with FIRST Global, a non-profit that organizes the FIRST Global Challenge, a international robotics event dedicated to inspiring a passion for STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) among young students worldwide.

Strategy Analytics predicts that electric vehicles will become a greater proportion of the global vehicle mix. As a result, the demand for power electronic components will account for over 55% of the total semiconductor demand for powertrains by 2026, according to the firm.

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