Silicon Wafer Prices Increase Twenty Percent – Supply Tightness Likely Through 2020

San Diego, CA, February 05, 2018:  TECHCET—the advisory services firm providing electronic materials information— announced that limited supplies of both 200mm- and 300mm-diameter silicon wafers caused greater than 20% year-over-year (YoY) price increases by the end of 2017. Such price increases have not been seen in the last decade, and are forecasted to continue at similar levels through at least the first half of 2018, as detailed in the latest update from TECHCET’s Critical Materials Report (CMR) on Silicon Wafers, recently presented to the Critical Materials Council (CMC).

“While wafer price increases result in cost increases for semiconductor device fabrication, they represent a long-term positive for the health of the supply-chain,” explained Michel Walden, TECHCET senior analyst and author of the report. “Wafer price declines over the last few years had prevented silicon suppliers from investing in needed capacity expansions. With a turnaround in prices, some of the top-five suppliers have announced capacity expansions that should improve the supply-demand balance, but we see continuing concern for the next two to three years.”

TECHCET’s proprietary wafer-demand forecast predicts a deficit in supply through the year 2020 and possibly into 2021. The cumulative annual growth rate (CAGR) of demand for all silicon wafers in millions of square inches (MSI) is forecasted at > 3% over the period from 2017 through 2021. Growth in automotive and IOT applications is driving solid recovery in demand for 200mm-diameter silicon wafers, while consumer electronics growth continues to pull consumption of 300mm silicon.

Suppliers covered in this report include:  Ferrotec, GlobalWafers/SunEdison, Hemlock Semiconductor (HSC), National Silicon Industry Group (NSIG) of China, Okmetic Ojy, Shin Etsu Hondotai (SEH), Siltronic, SK Siltron, SUMCO, Wacker Chemie AG, and Wafer Works.

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 For additional information about these reports or CMC Fabs membership please contact Diane Scott at  +1-480-332-8336, or go to or

CMP Materials Market to Reach $2.4B by 2022 –Slurry and Pad Sub-Markets both ~6% CAGR

San Diego, CA, January 18, 2018:  TECHCET—the advisory services firm providing electronic materials information— announced that increased use of 3D structures in commercial ICs leads to the need for more Chemical-Mechanical Planarization (CMP) process steps in commercial IC fabrication to keep the different layers properly aligned. The growing importance of CMP technology will lead to steady growth in the market for consumable materials. In particular, colloidal ceria slurry technology is a growing opportunity for 3D-NAND fabrication, as detailed in the latest quarterly update to the TECHCET Critical Materials Report (CMR) on CMP Slurry and Pads.

“The number of CMP process steps from 28nm- to 10nm-nodes has doubled, and advanced nodes clearly offer more opportunities for CMP and the need for more process consumable products,” explained Diane Scott, TECHCET senior analyst and author of the report. “Based on our proprietary models, at and below the 14nm-node the transistor-level CMP steps exceed the number used to form metal interconnects.”

Due to the recent introduction of cobalt (Co) metal for on-chip interconnects, TECHCET is now tracking direct materials for Co CMP. The rapidly growing market for cobalt CMP slurry is estimated to be about US$4M this year, using slurry sets derived from those used in copper (Cu) CMP. Global slurry and pad revenues for all IC CMP processes are forecast to reach US$2.4 billion by the year 2022.

Suppliers covered in this report include:  Ace Nanochem, Adcon Lab, Anii Microelectronics, Asahi Glass, BASF, Bailkowski/PSB, Cabot, Dongjin SemiChem, DowDupont, Eka Chemical/Akzo Nobel, Eikem, Eminess Technologies, Entrepix, Evonik Industries, Ferro, FujiFilm, Fujimi, Fuso Chemical, General Engineering and Research, W.R.Grace, Hitachi Chemical, Innovative Organics, Intersurface Dynamics, JGC C&C, JSR, KC Tech, Kemesys, Merck (incl. former AZ Chemical), Mitsui Mining & Smelting, Nalco, Nano Phase Technologies, Nissan Chemical Industries, Nitta-Haas, Precision Colloids, Rhodia (Solvay), Samsung (Cheil Industries), Showa Denko, Sibond, Saint-Gobain, Soulbrain, UK Abrasives, U Wiz Technology, Universal Photonics, Versum, Wacker Chemie,

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 For additional information about these reports or CMC Fabs membership please contact Diane Scott at  +1-480-332-8336, or go to

Sputter Targets Supply Chain Issues Revealed – Copper , Cobalt  and Ruthenium – Cost Increases Expected

San Diego, CA, September 1, 2017:  TECHCET — the advisory service firm providing electronic materials information— announced that copper raw material costs are expected to increase as demand outpaces supply in 2018. Meanwhile, demand for more exotic metals such as cobalt, ruthenium, and tantalum is expected to strain supply-chains starting next year. Trinary, quaternary, or even quinary material targets are needed to process the most advanced non-volatile memory (NVM) chips. In this highly dynamic time, there is financial pressure for corporate mergers and acquisitions among suppliers of metal sputtering targets.

Raw material accounts for 10% to 20% of physical vapor deposition (PVD) sputtering target costs. The total available market (TAM) for copper targets is currently growing at just ~3.2% CAGR, while there has been a lack of new investments in mining and refineries. Consequently, copper target prices may increase as the semiconductor manufacturing industry heads into 2019.

“We also can see a disruption in the targets market starting in 2018 due to the beginning use of cobalt and ruthenium interconnects for continued CMOS scaling in advanced nodes,” explained Terry Francis, TECHCET senior analyst and author of the report. “Cobalt supply is problematic because it is a conflict material with some sources tied to ‘artisinal mining’ in the DRC, and prices have risen by 150% recently due to demand for the element as an alloy in lithium batteries for electrical vehicles.”

A positive side-effect of escalating lithium battery manufacturing volumes has been an increase in lithium metal refining and associated tantalum tailings. Tantalum metal supply should now exceed global demand for the near-term, resulting in stable pricing for PVD targets used in IC fabs. New and niche non-volatile memory (NVM) technologies including magnetic RAM (MRAM), ferroelectric RAM (FRAM or FeRAM), and phase-change memory (PCM) all require small production quantities of highly value-added multi-element alloy blends as targets.

Suppliers covered in this report include:  Grikin, Heraus, Honeywell, JX Nippon, KFMI, Kennemetal, Materion, Plansee, Praxair, H.C. Starck, Tanaka, Tosoh SMD

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