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Silicon materials market unaffected by electronics downturn

Posted: 20 Sep 2002 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:silicon wafer semiconductors? lithography tool? mechanical polarization?

Business consulting firm Kline & Co. Inc. reported that despite a general slowdown in the electronics industry and sharp cutbacks in the sale of wafer fabrication tools, the market for consumables in silicon-based semiconductor manufacturing registered over $3.8 billion in 2001 with 2002 being expected to register about the same level of sales. This total is lower than that of 2000 (anecdotal evidence suggests about 20 percent lower), but the long-term prospects are set for 14 percent overall growth annually, Kline said.

Kline's study accounts for materials used in silicon wafer semiconductors and focuses on materials for lithography, chemical - mechanical planarization (CMP), dielectrics, and metal deposition - processes. Of the major sub-segments of this market, dielectrics is poised to exhibit the highest growth at 23 percent annually, once expensive low-k dielectric materials become common within a few years, Kline added.

The CMP market is also growing faster than average, at over 18 percent per year, due to its wider use and particularly to the growth of copper processing, Kline said. The study further predicted that photoresist materials will grow by 15 percent annually, as expensive 193nm and 157nm resists come into use, while etchants and metallization precursor materials are expected to advance seven and four percent per year, respectively.

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