Despite a recent slump in the electronics industry, electronics companies are in the midst of an onshoring boom, announcing new or expanded plants in the U.S. to meet future demand for semiconductors and other parts. And, companies that supply these electronics companies with materials and equipment for manufacturing are joining the onshoring trend. This in turn is created a more robust electronics manufacturing ecosystem that can better meet future supply-chain challenges and circumvent geopolitical challenges that hamper trade and threaten supplies.
Recently, the SIA (Semiconductor Industry Association) published its first U.S. Semiconductor Ecosystem Map, which provides a comprehensive guide to various locations where research and development, IP and chip design software providers, semiconductor fabrication, and suppliers of semiconductor manufacturing equipment and suppliers are located. This detailed listing also includes the university R&D partners of Semiconductor Research Corporation (SRC) and National Nanotechnology Coordinated Infrastructure (NNCI), which play an important role in the development of next-generation electronics technologies.
The map also highlights company investments for new and expansion semiconductor ecosystem projects. Thanks to the CHIPS Act enacted last August, there has been a flurry of projects announced to increase U.S. manufacturing capacity.
Semi Makers Ramp Up
Since mid-2022, the electronics industry has seen its earnings and revenue fall for many companies in the wake of falling demand following a prolonged growth period, aided by the COVID-19 pandemic. However, even struggling companies such as Intel and Micron─two companies hit particularly hard by the current industry downturnꟷhelped anchor the onshoring movement with planned manufacturing capacity expansions in the U.S.
Some plant expansions announced in recent months include:
─Memory supplier Micron announced plans to build a 1,400-care memory fab in Clay, NY, outside Syracuse. Construction is expected to start next year with the plant to start operating by 2030.
-Foundry TSMC has started constructing a second fab which is scheduled to begin producing 3nm process technology in 2026. Along with a previously announced fab, the two fabs are expected to produce over 600,000 wafers annually when completed, and create a total of 10,000 jobs.
-Texas Instruments will build a second 300mm fab in Lehi, Utah, next to an existing 300mm fab there.
-Microchip announced it would invest $880 million to expand its production of both silicon (Si) and silicon carbide (SiC) chips in its Colorado Springs, CO, plant.
-Four U.S.-based semiconductor manufacturers, the largest being NHanced Semiconductors, will begin operations in Odon, IN, at the WestGate@Crane Technology Park, a 10-acre public-private development which broke ground last Fall.
-Analog Devices is investing $1 billion to upgrade its semiconductor plant near Beaverton, OR.
-Integra Technologies, which supplies semiconductor packaging, testing, qualification, and other services, will invest $1.8 billion in a large-scale plant in Wichita, KS.
-Samsung Electronics is a Korean company, but it is notable the global electronics giant announced last November it would invest $17 billion to build a new semi fab in Taylor, TX, to build advanced logic chips.
Semi Partners Follow
Because the geographic presence of suppliers and subcontractors is vital to making onshoring work, these suppliers of semiconductor materials and services also have announced new or expanded U.S. plants:
- Absolics, Inc., a subsidiary of SKC Co. Ltd., has broken ground for a new manufacturing facility that will supply advanced materials to the U.S. semiconductor industry.
- Entegris, Inc. a supplier of advanced materials and process solutions for the semiconductor and other high-technology industries, will build a manufacturing center of excellence in Colorado Springs.
-Applied Materials plans to build a next-generation R&D center in Sunnyvale, Calif. This center will advance materials engineering, foundational semiconductor technologies and process equipment. The Silicon Valley center will play a central role in collaborative research and development with all the leading global chipmakers, bolster university partnerships, and able to engage with a future U.S. National Semiconductor Technology Center.
Spencer Chin is a Senior Editor for Design News covering the electronics beat. He has many years of experience covering developments in components, semiconductors, subsystems, power, and other facets of electronics from both a business/supply-chain and technology perspective. He can be reached at [email protected].