FEB. 20 Catania, Italy–STMicroelectronics recently began construction of a state-of-the-art fab, known as M6, in Catania, Italy. The company plans to invest $1,500 million over the next several years in the new facility, which will focus on flash and other nonvolatile memory technologies.
Initial production will use 200mm wafers, but the plant is structurally designed to easily be upgraded to 300mm wafers. The 10,000-square-meter cleanroom, augmented by 65,000 square meters of service and support facilities, has full production capability of 9,000 8-in. equivalent wafers per week using 0.13-micron technology, with future capability down to 0.1-micron.
“Every investment we have made in Catania has confirmed that this is one of the world’s most attractive locations for high technology industries,” says Pasquale Pistorio, president and CEO of STMicroelectronics. “The synergy with our existing facilities in Catania, the excellence of the local industrial and educational infrastructure, and the rich pool of engineering talent will ensure that M6 contributes strongly to STMicroelectronics’ growth as one of the world’s most important semiconductor companies.”
At the same time, STMicroelectronics’ M5 facility in Catania, an advanced wafer fab dedicated to the production of nonvolatile memories, is nearing the end of an expansion project. Begun in October 1999, the expansion project is adding 20,000 square meters to the total fab area, including 2,500 square meters of cleanroom. Production will be boosted from 3,300 wafers per week in 1999 to 5,500 by the end of this year, according to company officials.