II-VI boosts production at UK fab

October 05, 2021 // By Nick Flaherty
II-VI boosts production at UK fab
Compound semiconductor specialist II-VI is ramping up production at its fab in Newton Aycliffe, UK.

US-based II-VI acquired the 6in fab in 2017 from Kaiam Laser for $80m and makes GaAs, SiC and InP devices for optoelectroinic applications. The 300,000 square foot facility has a 100,000 square foot clean room.

It was built as a DRAM fab for Funjitsu and has since been owned by Filtronic, RF Micro Devices and Compound Photonics.

II-VI is currently recruiting for 34 roles at the site on LinkedIn, including materials scientists, process engineers, device engineers, manufacturing technicians and back end of line (BEOL) operators.

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“This facility hosts one of the best clean rooms in the entire compound semiconductor industry and augments our capabilities at a time when industry capacity is rapidly becoming fully subscribed,” said Dr. Chuck Mattera, President and Chief Executive Officer of II-VI at the time of the acquisition. “Given the demand we anticipate, this acquisition will allow us faster time to market than building a proprietary green field site and will enhance our leadership position in the supply chain. It adds to our in-house capacity for VCSELs, and is also as part of a broader strategic move to provide a versatile 6in wafer fab for GaAs, SiC and InP-based devices. This acquisition will significantly expand our capacity and is expected to enable us over time to penetrate high growth markets driven by, for example, 3D sensing, 5G wireless, the electrification of the car, and data center communications.”

Kaiam, headquartered in Newark, New Jersey, also had a plant in Scotland that closed in 2018 and the whole company folded in 2019 after a patent battle with Finisar, which was itself bought by II-VI in 2018.

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