原创 Is US basking in a chip manufacturing renaissance?

2013-7-16 20:26 6722 21 21 分类: 消费电子

According to Karen Savala, president of the fab tool trade group SEMI Americas, the United States is experiencing a renaissance in manufacturing, and the semiconductor industry is going along for the ride.


OK, Savala is not an impartial observer. Her job is to promote North American semiconductor capital equipment vendors, and the notion that chip building can make a comeback in the US is mighty appealing to SEMI member companies.


For years, the conventional wisdom has been that chip making—like just about all other high-tech manufacturing endeavors—is slowly (or not so slowly) shifting to Asia, where less expensive labour and often more favourable tax policies make it more economical. But Savala, citing a recent Time magazine article, maintains that manufacturing in general is making a comeback in the US, and that chip making and other high-tech manufacturing operations are a big part of it.


"High-tech manufacturing is thriving in the US, and some is even return to the US," she said Monday at a kickoff press conference for the annual Semicon West tradeshow in San Francisco.


There has been much activity in recent years in upstate New York, where a number of semiconductor R&D consortiums are getting down to work. Globalfoundries has built a massive fab there. But is that enough to be considered a renaissance?


Savala said the increasing complexity of chip manufacturing favours close geographic proximity to fabless chip vendors, the semiconductor supply chain, and R&D. Most of those are still found in the US. She also cited a "growing recognition of the importance of public-private partnerships in high-tech manufacturing," including the Global 450mm Consortium in New York. The building of chips on 450mm wafers will get its start in the US, and the first generation of 450mm megafabs will be located in the US.


In addition, Savala mentioned US President Barack Obama's recent visit to an Applied Materials facility in Austin, Texas, as well as several examples from Obama's most recent State of the Union address that would appear to support high-tech manufacturing in the US. "At SEMI, we believe there is a renewed appreciation that semiconductor manufacturing is one of the most important industries in the US," she said.


Savala cited Semiconductor Industry Association statistics that put total direct semiconductor employment in the US at nearly 245,000 and growth in the US chip manufacturing workforce at 3.7 per cent for 2011—three times the rate for the broader US economy. She also said that the chip industry is responsible for creating more that 1 million jobs in the supply chain and related US sectors, and that semiconductors are one of the leading US export categories—larger than corn, wheat, and soybeans combined.


Again, consider the source. A comeback by the US chip building industry would be good for Savala and for SEMI. She makes some good points, but calling this a renaissance still seems like a reach. What do you think?

 

Dylan McGrath

EE Times
 

文章评论0条评论)

登录后参与讨论
相关推荐阅读
semiconscious.blog 2015-02-20 20:40
Impact of IEEE's controversial patent ruling
The IEEE’s decision to approve a bitterly contested change to its patent policy, has, perhaps unsu...
semiconscious.blog 2013-12-05 21:58
Semiconductor industry goes past $300B barrier
As we head into 2014, it's traditional to review the passing year and look for upcoming trends. On...
semiconscious.blog 2013-08-11 15:37
The end of Moore's Law?
I usually just roll my eyes and move on when I hear an end-of-the-world story. However, I heard a ...
semiconscious.blog 2013-08-11 14:59
Is Moore's Law still relevant? Does it Matter?
Usually, when I hear a doomsday story, I just roll my eyes and move on. However, I heard a message...
semiconscious.blog 2013-07-31 18:42
The love triangle: EDA services, tools & IP
It has been done in the past: An EDA company, which usually licenses software as a design tool, be...
semiconscious.blog 2013-07-30 20:17
China not a future chip manufacturing powerhouse
Do you recall when China's rise to become a semiconductor manufacturing powerhouse seemed inevitab...
我要评论
0
21
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
0
关闭 热点推荐上一条 /4 下一条