Chipmaker TSMC eyeing expansion of planned Arizona plant

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TSMC, the world’s largest contract chipmaker, introduced in May 2020 it might construct a $12 billion manufacturing unit in Arizona.

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Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co Ltd (TSMC) is planning to construct a number of extra chipmaking factories within the U.S. state of Arizona past the one at the moment deliberate, three individuals aware of the matter instructed Reuters.

TSMC, the world’s largest contract chipmaker, introduced in May 2020 it might construct a $12 billion manufacturing unit in Arizona, an obvious win by the Trump administration in its push to wrestle international tech provide chains again from China.

TSMC is organising a 12-inch wafer fabrication plant in Phoenix, and the ability is predicted to start out quantity manufacturing in 2024, Taiwan’s funding fee of the ministry of financial affairs, which authorised the funding, mentioned in December.

TSMC manufactures the majority of its chips in Taiwan and has older chip services in China and the U.S. state of Washington.

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Three sources aware of the matter, talking on situation of anonymity as they weren’t authorised to talk to the media, instructed Reuters that as much as 5 further fabs for Arizona are being deliberate.

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The preliminary fab is comparatively modest by business requirements, with a deliberate output of 20,000 wafers – every of which accommodates hundreds of chips – each month utilizing the corporate’s most subtle 5 nanometre semiconductor manufacturing know-how.

It shouldn’t be clear how a lot further manufacturing capability and funding the extra fabs would possibly symbolize, and which chip manufacturing know-how they’d use.

TSMC final month mentioned it deliberate to speculate $100 billion over the subsequent three years to extend manufacturing capability, although it didn’t give particulars.

One particular person with direct data of the matter instructed Reuters the growth was in response to a request from the U.S., however declined to offer additional particulars.

“The United States requested it. Internally TSMC is planning to build up to six fabs,” the particular person mentioned, including that it was not attainable to offer a timeframe.

The Biden administration is getting ready to spend tens of billions of {dollars} to help home chip manufacturing. Under current laws, overseas corporations are eligible for these funds, however whether or not they may finally obtain it’s an open query.

A second particular person aware of the plans mentioned the corporate had already made positive there was sufficient area for growth once they obtained the land for the primary plant.

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“It’s so they can build six fabs,” the supply mentioned.

The third particular person, from a TSMC provider concerned within the Arizona undertaking, mentioned TSMC had instructed them the plan was to construct a complete of six fabs over the subsequent three years.

Reuters was not in a position to independently verify the timeframe.

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TSMC referred to feedback by CEO C.C. Wei on an earnings name final month, saying the corporate was beginning chip manufacturing in Arizona in 2024 with a 20,000 wafer per 30 days 5-nanometer know-how.

“But in fact, we have acquired a large piece of land in Arizona to provide flexibility. So further expansion is possible, but we will ramp up to Phase 1 first, then based on the operation efficiency and cost economics and also the customers’ demand, to decide what the next steps we are going to do.”

Asked whether or not the deliberate growth was due to a request from the United States, TSMC mentioned it was “not sure” what was meant by “requests” coming from the U.S. aspect and that it’ll resolve subsequent steps primarily based on operational effectivity, value economics and buyer demand.

“Once there is any official decision, we will disclose it accordingly.”

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