$2 Billion Boost: Onsemi Ambitious Expansion in Czech Republic

Onsemi's ambitious $2 billion expansion in the Czech Republic aims to transform the semiconductor manufacturing landscape. This strategic investment will boost silicon carbide production, enhancing the energy efficiency of electric vehicles, renewable energy systems, and AI data centers.

Introduction

In a groundbreaking move that could reshape the semiconductor landscape in Europe, U.S. chipmaker Onsemi has announced a massive $2 billion investment to boost its production capabilities in the Czech Republic.

This strategic decision is set to significantly enhance Onsemi’s capacity to produce silicon carbide (SiC) semiconductors, which are essential for the future of electric vehicles, renewable energy, and AI data centers.

This expansion not only underscores the importance of Europe in the global semiconductor industry but also highlights the rapidly growing demand for advanced semiconductor technologies.

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Background on Onsemi and the Czech Republic Facility

Onsemi, a prominent player in the semiconductor industry, has been steadily expanding its global footprint.

The company’s existing facility in Roznov pod Radhostem, Czech Republic, already boasts impressive production capabilities, producing over three million wafers annually, which include more than one billion power devices.

This facility has been pivotal in supporting Onsemi’s global operations, particularly in the power semiconductor segment.

The Czech Republic has emerged as an attractive destination for semiconductor investments due to its strategic location, skilled workforce, and supportive government policies.

The country has been actively seeking foreign investments to boost its high-tech manufacturing sector, making it an ideal location for Onsemi’s latest venture.

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The Significance of the Investment

Meeting Growing Demand

The semiconductor industry is experiencing unprecedented growth, driven by the increasing demand for more powerful and efficient electronic devices.

Onsemi’s investment in silicon carbide technology is particularly significant because SiC semiconductors offer superior performance compared to traditional silicon-based semiconductors.

SiC devices can operate at higher voltages. They can withstand higher temperatures and frequencies.

This makes them ideal for electric vehicles. They are also perfect for renewable energy systems. Additionally, they excel in high-performance computing applications.

Enhancing Energy Efficiency

One of the key advantages of SiC semiconductors is their ability to improve energy efficiency.

For instance, in electric vehicles, SiC power devices reduce energy losses. They increase the overall efficiency of the powertrain. This leads to longer battery life and extended driving range.

In renewable energy applications, SiC semiconductors enhance the efficiency of solar inverters. They also improve the performance of wind turbines. This contributes to a more sustainable energy infrastructure.

Strengthening Europe’s Semiconductor Supply Chain

The European Union aims to reduce reliance on non-European suppliers. It seeks to establish a strong, resilient semiconductor supply chain within the region.

The European Chips Act aims to double the EU’s global semiconductor production share to 20% by 2030. Onsemi’s expansion in the Czech Republic supports this goal. It enhances the region’s strategic position in the global semiconductor value chain.

Onsemi’s decision to expand in Czechia confirms our country’s attractiveness for foreign investment,” said Jozef Sikela, Minister of Industry and Trade of the Czech Republic.

Economic and Employment Impact

While Onsemi has not disclosed the exact number of jobs this investment will create, it is expected to have a significant positive impact on the local economy.

The expansion in Roznov pod Radhostem will likely create numerous high-tech jobs and support ancillary industries in the region. Moreover, the Czech government is expected to provide incentives to support this expansion, further highlighting the mutual benefits of this investment.

Our brownfield investment would establish a Central European supply chain to better service our customers’ rapidly increasing demand for innovative technologies that improve the energy efficiency in their applications,”

Hassane El-Khoury, president and CEO of Onsemi.

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Industry Context and Competitive Landscape

Onsemi’s investment is part of a broader trend of semiconductor companies expanding their manufacturing capabilities in Europe. Several industry giants have announced significant investments in the region:

  • STMicroelectronics: Investing 5 billion euros in a silicon carbide chip plant in Catania, Italy, with a 2 billion euro government grant.
  • TSMC: Building an $11 billion factory in Dresden, Germany, with up to 5 billion euros in government subsidies.
  • Intel: Planning to spend 30 billion euros on two chip plants in Germany, supported by substantial government subsidies.

These investments underscore the importance of Europe as a key hub for semiconductor manufacturing, driven by both market demand and supportive government policies.

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Future Prospects

According to Simon Keeton, head of Onsemi’s power solutions division, production from the new investment could start as early as 2027.

This timeline reflects the long lead times required for developing and ramping up advanced semiconductor manufacturing facilities.

As the global semiconductor market is projected to grow from $600 billion in 2021 to a trillion-dollar industry by 2030, Onsemi’s investment positions the company to capitalize on this expansion.

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Conclusion

Onsemi has $2 billion investment in the Czech Republic marks a significant milestone in the company’s strategy to enhance its semiconductor manufacturing capabilities.

By focusing on silicon carbide technology, Onsemi aims to meet the growing demand for energy-efficient semiconductors in critical sectors such as electric vehicles, renewable energy, and AI data centers.

This move not only strengthens Onsemi’s position in the global semiconductor market but also supports the European Union’s strategic goals of establishing a robust semiconductor supply chain.

As Onsemi and other industry leaders continue to invest heavily in Europe, the region is poised to become a critical hub for the future of semiconductor manufacturing, driving innovation and economic growth for years to come.

Stay tuned for more updates on how these developments will shape the future of technology and industry.

Editorial Team
Editorial Team
Articles: 1925