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Industry's aggressive fab expansion plans do not necessarily mean a capacity glut is looming
knometa research, global semiconductor analysis, Number of Semiconductor Fabs Using 300mm Wafers
With fab construction activity at its highest level in many years, it is not surprising that there has been talk of a market crash coming from too much capacity being added. The new Global Wafer Capacity 2022 report makes the case that, while fab expansion plans are certainly aggressive and could lead to some downward pricing pressure in 2024, a significant market downturn caused by too many fabs sitting with idle capacity is not expected.
Count of semiconductor fabs using 300mm wafers projected to exceed 200 by 2026
knometa research, global semiconductor analysis, Number of Semiconductor Fabs Using 300mm Wafers
At the end of 2021, there were 153 semiconductor fabs processing 300mm wafers for the fabrication of ICs, including CMOS image sensors, and non-IC products such as power discretes.

The 300mm wafer fab count increased by 14 in 2021, the most in one year since the same number opened in 2005. There are 10 fabs scheduled to open in 2022, followed by another 13 in 2023 and 10 in 2024. This puts the industry on pace to have more than 200 300mm fab lines in operation by 2026.
With Tower acquisition, Intel will take over industry’s ninth largest foundry
Intel announced plans to acquire Tower Semiconductor for $5.4 billion as part of efforts to become a major provider of foundry services and capacity. Intel describes the deal as highly complementary, bringing together its leading-edge nodes and scale manufacturing with Tower’s specialty technologies and customer-first approach to delivering technology and manufacturing capabilities.

Based on data compiled for Knometa’s new Global Wafer Capacity 2022 report, Tower was industry’s ninth largest foundry at the end of 2021 in terms of installed capacity. Tower has four wholly owned and three majority owned fab sites around the world. Tower also has a partnership with STMicroelectronics to share the cleanroom space in a new 300mm fab ST is opening later this year in Italy.

Tower's wholly owned fabs
Fab Name and Location Wafer Capacity
Fab 1 – Migdal Haemek, Israel 150mm 20,000 wpm
Fab 2 – Migdal Haemek, Israel 200mm 43,000 wpm
Fab 3 – Newport Beach, California, USA 200mm 24,000 wpm
Fab 9 – San Antonio, Texas, USA 200mm 30,000 wpm
China's share of global wafer capacity continues to climb
knometa research, global semiconductor analysis, Global Wafer Capacity by Fab Location
The new 2022 edition of Global Wafer Capacity shows that China’s share of the world’s capacity for fabricating IC wafers continued to grow in 2021. The country ended the year having 16% of global capacity, based on normalized installed monthly capacity amounts.

China’s share of capacity has increased one percentage point in each of the last two years and a total of seven points since 2011, when the country accounted for just 9% of all IC wafer capacity.

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