Electric vehicles, according to Foxconn chairman Young Liu, hold the key to Taiwan’s compound semiconductor industry. As China prioritizes compound semiconductor in its latest Five-Year Plan, in a bid to leapfrog the West, Taiwan has also been actively looking into this field as well.
Terry Tsao, the President of SEMI Taiwan, observed that Taiwan’s strong foundation in LED had already laid the groundwork for its advance into the compound semiconductor sector. The missing puzzle is to find the right application scenarios that will drive the compound semiconductor industry into action. As the Foxconn chairman put it, the initiation of the MIH Alliance was partly based on the recognition of this demand.
Since 30% of EV manufacturing costs are attributed to semiconductors, especially power semiconductors, Foxconn sees silicon carbide (SiC) as a key to cost reduction, which drove the world’s largest electronics contract manufacturer to acquire Macronix’s 150-mm fab. The newly acquired fab will be retrofitted to produce SiC components in small volume, serving as Foxconn’s R&D center of compound semiconductors. Eventually, Foxconn aspires to replicate Taiwan’s success in developing a complete Silicon-based value chain, and build its counterpart to TSMC in a SiC-based industry.
Source: Business Next