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Japanese DRAM makers' woes echo rest of industry after quake - Computerworld

IDG News Service - Japanese DRAM maker Elpida Memory on Monday said its factories are operating "at close to normal levels" two weeks after the 9.0-magnitude earthquake in Japan, and that it has "sufficient parts and materials to continue supplying out customers as usual until the end of July."

Although the company said it is in discussions to secure further materials after July and doesn't expect any interruption to its business, Elpida will find itself competing against a growing number of chip makers seeking the same materials, 300-millimeter (12-inch) silicon wafers. The earthquake and resulting tsunami have affected production at key factories making these wafers, the raw materials that chips are etched onto.

Market researcher IHS iSuppli estimates that damage to these factories could reduce the supply of silicon wafers globally by 25%, which "could have a major effect on worldwide semiconductor production," particularly DRAM chips. Compounding earthquake and tsunami damage, other chip factories are being hurt by rolling blackouts meant to share electricity made scarce because several power plants were knocked offline in the disaster.



Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.
by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Mon Mar 28th, 2011 at 12:17:28 PM EST

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