Cree to Increase Its SiC Capacity by Building the World’s Largest SiC Device Manufacturing Facility in New York

After selling the lighting business, Cree is accelerating its development in silicon carbide technology. The US firm announced the plan to establish a silicon carbide corridor on the East Coast of the United States with the creation of the world’s largest silicon carbide fabrication facility.

Cree said it will build an automotive-qualified 200mm power and RF wafer fabrication facility in Marcy, New York, complemented by its mega materials factory expansion currently underway at its Durham headquarters.

The new fabrication facility, part of a previously announced project to dramatically increase capacity for its Wolfspeed silicon carbide and GaN business, will be a bigger, highly-automated factory with greater output capability. Through a strategic partnership with the office of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo and other state and local agencies and entities, the decision to build in New York will allow for both continued future expansion of capacity and significant net cost savings for Cree.

As a result, Cree will continue to drive the transition from silicon to silicon carbide technology to meet the increasing demand for the company’s groundbreaking Wolfspeed technology that supports the growing electric vehicle (EV), 4G/5G mobile and industrial markets.

As part of the partnership, Cree will be investing approximately US$1 billion in construction, equipment and other related costs for the New York fab. New York state will provide a US$500 million grant from Empire State Development and Cree will be eligible for additional local incentives and abatements as well as equipment and tooling from SUNY. As a result, the company expects to realize a net capital savings of approximately US$280 million on our previously announced $1 billion capacity expansion through 2024.

In addition, it will provide 25 percent increased output compared to the previously planned facility. Ramping in 2022, the size of the new facility will be up to 480,000 square-feet upon completion, approximately one fourth of which will be clean room space, providing future expansion capacity as needed. These expansions will further improve Cree’s competitive position in the marketplace and accelerate silicon carbide adoption across an array of high-growth industries.

Creation of the silicon carbide corridor

With a mega materials factory in Durham and wafer fabrication facility near Utica, Cree will establish a “silicon carbide corridor”, leveraging its 30-year heritage of research and development in the Research Triangle of North Carolina and tapping into the rich technological base of resources situated in New York’s Mohawk Valley.

Cree plans to partner with local community and four-year colleges in North Carolina and New York to develop training and internship programs to prepare its workforce for the high-tech employment and long-term growth opportunities in both locations that the company’s revised expansion plan presents.

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