Dynamic changes impacting advanced electronic materials industry

Technologies, Business Models, Applications and Materials Management Strategies in Transition — SEMI reports.

August 22, 2012 — The $100B+ electronics materials industry is undergoing rapid metamorphosis as technologies, markets, business models, and materials management practices are all being restructured to meet the needs of a profit-hungry, environmentally-conscious and innovation-dependent world. The $50 billion semiconductor materials industry alone, for example, needs investment in new lithography resists, novel device architectures, and advanced interconnect and packaging while trying to maintain margins in a consolidating industry where manufacturers know how to leverage buying power. At the same time, advanced electronics materials markets in displays, LED, PV and power semiconductors — collectively larger than traditional semiconductors — are providing new, potentially higher-profit opportunities for suppliers. Both manufacturers and suppliers are responding to these dynamics through joint development agreements and other collaboration models, increasingly important resource recovery strategies, and capitalizing on the synergies between advanced materials requirements among different industries.

These and other issues will be the focus of 2012 Strategic Materials Conference (SMC) to be held on October 23-24 at SEMI headquarters in San Jose, CA. For more information on the conference, visit www.semi.org/en/node/41386. SMC is the only conference dedicated to exploring the synergies, trends and business opportunities in advanced electronic materials. Many of the developments, trends and collaboration in one industry are applicable to other industries, creating potential valuable synergies across the materials spectrum. With presentations by leading market analysts, academic researchers, industry consortiums, leading manufacturers, and top suppliers, SMC will serve as a valuable forecasting tool and accelerator for advanced materials usage in the electronics industry.

To provide a broad reach, the 2-day SMC will feature four 2-hour tracks in semiconductors, carbon-based materials for energy storage and ICs, LED/Power devices, and OLED/printed electronics. Each of these areas are characterized by significant opportunities and challenges. In LEDs and power semiconductors, for example, dramatic increases in solid state lighting and emerging markets for electric vehicles, Smart Grid, solar inverters and other areas have a driven a race in Si, GaN on Si, GaN on GaN, SiC, and sapphire-based technologies. In organic and printed electronics, OLED displays are quickly emerging as a replacement for LCDs even in large format displays, potentially creating opportunities for leveraged technologies in OLED lighting, thin film batteries, printed logic and memory.

Other portions of the conference will be devoted to critical trends and issues in materials usage and materials development, including rare earth supply dynamics, materials recovery, collaboration models and joint development strategies, investment opportunities, and more. Leading industry analysts will also provide market forecast and insights into application trends. Significant networking opportunities including a dinner reception will be included in the conference.

Figure source: SEMI Materials Market Data Subscription May 2012

One of the collaboration strategies explored in the conference will discuss how equipment OEMs, materials suppliers and major manufacturers can work more effectively together. Today, frequent R&D efforts can be distributed at research consortia, manufacturer process development labs, and at materials suppliers, each in conjunction with key equipment suppliers who have their own development programs. Speakers from Intel, Micron, Air Liquid and Applied Materials will discuss common development strategies and ways they can be improved.

Materials refining, recycling and recovery is also becoming a critical issue for many industries due to regulatory compliance and as a cost reduction imperative, with implications for fab design, intellectual property protection, onsite materials infrastructure and other areas. Experts from Envirodigm, Sachem, Intel and Air Products and Chemicals will discuss this “paradigm shift” in manufacturing and how it provides both opportunities and challenges.

SMC has provided valuable information and networking opportunities to materials and electronics industry professionals since 1995. SMC 2012 builds on that legacy, expanding the reach and focus of the conference to examine advanced electronics materials for the semiconductor and adjacent industries. SMC is organized by the Chemical and Gas Manufacturers Group (CGMG) is a SEMI Special Interest Group comprised of leading manufacturers, producers, packagers and distributors of chemicals and gases used in the microelectronics industry. For more information on the conference, visit www.semi.org/en/node/41386.


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