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Sony pours $1B in image sensing mfg

Posted: 27 Jun 2012 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:CMOS? image sensor? wafer manufacturing?

Sony Corp. will invest around $1.00 billion (?80 billion) to provide wafer processing equipment for stacked CMOS image sensors and to increase and transform wafer lines capable of manufacturing CMOS image sensors. This is planned to increase total production capacity for CCD and CMOS image sensors to approximately 60,000 wafers per month by the end of September 2013.

Sony's expansion is planned in light of the rapidly expanding demand for smartphones and tablets. The company also intends to accelerate its growth strategy by incorporating superior core technologies, including stacked CMOS image sensors, into a wide range of products for its digital imaging and mobile businesses, which are priorities within its electronics business.

Sony will use a governmental subsidy to be provided by the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry in Japan, through the "Subsidy for Domestic Location Promotion Projects" program.

The investment overview, states that the purpose of investment is to increase the production capacity for stacked CMOS image sensors. The investment site is at Sony Semiconductor Corp.'s Nagasaki Technology Center at Isahaya-shi, Nagasaki Prefecture. The investment details are for:

  • Nagasaki TEC Fab 2 facility: installing equipment to manufacture CMOS image sensors and part of wafers lines
  • Nagasaki TEC Fab 3 facility: transforming certain existing equipment to manufacture CMOS image sensors; and
  • Nagasaki TEC Fab 4 facility: installing and increasing part of wafers lines.

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