Samsung Foundry closed down the wafer fab on Tuesday February 16 in response to call to do so from local electricity grid operator Austin Energy, after it found the need to impose rolling blackouts brought on by snow storms and extreme cold (see Snow in Texas closes Samsung, NXP, Infineon wafer fabs).
Market analyst TrendForce estimates that S2 accounts for nearly 5 percent of global production of chips on 300mm-diameter wafers. As it appears that Samsung was able to successfully park work in progress the loss of production for a week would mean that the global supply is constrained by about 1 to 2 percent in the month of February. It should return to normal in March.
The main manufacturing processes run at S2 are 14nm and 11nm nodes used to manufacture Qualcomm 5G RFICs. The remainder ranges from 28nm to 65nm and includes some automotive chips made for Tesla and Renesas.
The closure of 200mm wafer fabs belonging to Infineon Technologies and NXP Semiconductors in the Austin region is also expected to have an impact on making automotive ICs for a supply chain that is already under-delivering.
Samsung is developing plans to build a second wafer fab adjacent to S2 to take its capability in the US down to 3nm.
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