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February 20, 2013

Infineon Technologies to Make More Efficient Power Chips

Infineon Technologies (News - Alert) AG will make more efficient power chips on 12 inch-thin (300 mm) wafers, according to news reports.

Reuters explains that the thinner and larger wafers will lead to two-and-a-half times more chips that can be made from a single wafer. Also, less silicon will be required in manufacturing.

To produce the new chips, Infineon will invest about $340 million in company plants located in Villach, Austria, and Dresden, Germany, Reuters (News - Alert) said.

The power chips, which will be produced in Dresden, can control electrical currents and can be used for power generation and consumer electronics.

"Infineon put its faith in this manufacturing technology very early on and continued to invest even in economically difficult times,” Reinhard Ploss, CEO of Infineon Technologies AG (News - Alert), said in a company statement.

 “We think and act with foresight and are now reaping the benefits: The qualification of our entire 300-millimeter line represents a veritable leap ahead of the competition. 300-millimeter thin-wafer manufacturing for power semiconductors will enable us, with the corresponding demand, to seize the opportunities that the market offers."

Infineon is the only company making power semiconductors on 300-millimeter thin wafers.

“Our ability to innovate is the basis of our success – good ideas are turned into reality. In both Austria and in Saxony we have the necessary conditions for this: technological know-how, well-educated and highly motivated specialists and exemplary support from government policy," Ploss added.

Infineon's power semiconductors are used in servers, PCs and notebooks, in entertainment electronics and mobile telephone infrastructure, as well as in lighting systems and wind-power and photovoltaic systems.

As of last year, Infineon was ranked as the world’s second largest automotive semiconductor supplier based on data from Strategy Analytics. It has a 10 percent market share worldwide worth about $23 billion in 2011. In Europe, the company has a market share of 14.7 percent.

Edited by Brooke Neuman

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