Rohm to manufacture SiC wafers in Japan for the first time

Chiang, Jen-Chieh, Taipei, DIGITIMES Asia 0


Rohm Semiconductor is planning to produce silicon carbide (SiC) wafers for the first time within Japan in 2024 to expand its production capacity and increase supply stability.

According to Nikkan, a Japanese industrial news outlet, Isao Matsumoto, President of Rohm Co Ltd., announced during an earnings call in early November 2023 that it will manufacture 8-inch (200mm) silicon carbide wafers in its second factory in Miyazaki Prefecture, Japan, primarily for Rohm's internal use. The operation is expected to commence in 2024.

The second factory in Miyazaki was originally a facility of Solar Frontier, a subsidiary of Idemitsu Kosan. Rohm is about to acquire this factory through an upcoming transaction. Once converted to Rohm's second factory at Miyazaki, it is planned to become Rohm's largest SiC power semiconductor factory, using 8-inch wafers.

According to Rohm's official website, Rohm currently has four production sites for SiC-based power semiconductors in Japan, which are located at its headquarters in Kyoto, Fukuoka Prefecture's Chikugo site and Nagahama site, and Miyazaki Prefecture's Miyazaki site. Rohm aims to achieve a revenue of JPY100 billion for silicon carbide power semiconductors by the fiscal year 2025, while bringing capacity to six times that of fiscal 2021.

After Rohm acquired the German silicon carbide wafer manufacturer SiCrystal in 2009, it produced silicon carbide wafers at its site in Nuremberg, Germany. Now, for the sake of business continuity planning, ensuring a stable and secure supply chain, and expanding production capacity, Rohm has decided to establish a silicon carbide wafer production line within Japan, making it the second production site for Rohm's silicon carbide wafers.