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By Stanley Myers

From: NEN, Vol. 5, No. 7, Nov. 1997, p. 11.
New Energy News (NEN) copyright 1997 by Fusion Information Center, Inc.
COPYING NOT ALLOWED without written permission.


Stanley Myers, "The I300I/J300 Joint Guidance Agreement: Its impact on the 300-mm Transition," Solid State Tech., October 1997, pp 105-109.

All of the industrial equipment for the manufacturing and processing of semi-conductors will have to be modified to handle 300-mm wafers instead of the current 200-mm wafers. The article states, "The transition to producing chips on 300-mm wafers will cost the equipment and materials industry more than $14 billion, possibly the largest single industrial transition ever, in any industry."

It is interesting to speculate on the size of the transition from current energy sources (oil fields, refineries, power plants, power transmission lines, etc.) to the use of new-energy sources. As a rule of thumb, the infrastructure expenditures are about one-tenth of annual sales. That would mean a new-energy infrastructure of about $500 billion.

Stanley Myers provided us with the following figures: By the year 2000, the electronic system industry is expected to reach about one trillion dollars with the semiconductor chips being about $300 billion per year world wide. The materials, service, and equipment business is estimated to be $90 to $100 billion per year. The figure of $14 billion to update the infrastructure for this materials, service, and equipment business for the making of semiconductors is close to that 10% rule-of-thumb figure above. In terms of growth, it is expected that the electronic semiconductor industry (memory, logic, ASIC, mixed signal, and power products) will show an average sustained growth of 20% to 25% per year.

It has been 52 years since the transistor was discovered (not counting Henry Moray's rejected patent application). Now the "transistor-plus" industry is approaching one trillion dollars. The New-Energy Industry will probably follow a similar growth pattern but perhaps faster. [Readers: Would you like to send a letter to the editor and suggest when the New-Energy Device and Systems market will reach one trillion dollars? Ed.]

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Nov. 14, 1997.