How much 300mm Semiconductor Wafer Development Cost?

Summary : 300mm wafer development in the mid-90s failed as a silicon cycle downturn took the industry down. Worse, most of the new 300mm tools in development were not targeted at the leading edge, which proved to be a huge mistake.

The Chip Insider®

By G Dan Hutcheson       

3/20/98 More news from the front lines: How much has the 300mm boondoggle cost?  So far, I estimate that $4.4B has been spent by the equipment industry for developing 300mm equipment for the 0.25 and 0.18 micron generations.   It has been a boondoggle because most of the investment has been a waste, since chip makers have largely decided to wait until 0.13 micron to make their move.   Currently the equipment industry is spending 4.2% of revenues on 300mm R&D.   So, it will spend another $10.7B between now and 2001 for 0.13 micron, 300mm equipment.   This is why the roadmapping process is so critical, but it is also needs to be as accurate as possible.

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