South Korean Company Develops 12-inch Sapphire Wafer, Aiming to Strengthen Domestic Material Supply

A Korean company announced that it has developed “12-inch sapphire wafer” with required quality which can help to support local demands of semiconductor materials, reported ETNEWS, a Korean media.

Japan imposed restriction on exportation of three semiconductor materials that are critical for display manufacture to South Korea due to disputes between the two countries. The Korea government and companies have thus been pushing the development of materials, components and equipment so that they will be less reliable on imposed products.

(Image: Samsung)

The achievement of 12-inch sapphire wafer demonstrated the effort of Korean companies. Daekyung Semco, a medium-sized South Korean company, adopted the technology based on Rubicon Technology, the world’s biggest sapphire ingot manufacturer, to develop the 12-inch sapphire wafer.

The wafer achieved a total thickness variation of only 0.5 mm, comparing to the current standard at 0.7 mm. The company said it will continue to move on to develop wafer with 0.3 mm total thickness variation. This product prototype was supplied to a Taiwanese company.

Korean industry players have been dedicating to develop materials and components to meet domestic demands, including Mini LED chips, by which Samsung is reportedly buying from Taiwanese and Chinese companies for its upcoming Mini LED backlit TVs. In addition, Korean business also import most of the bonding substrates for Mini LED display from Japanese companies.

The Korea government is investing its small- and middle-sized companies to focus on research and development of those technology supplies so that its businesses can be more independent. Building a Mini LED display supply chain, for example, would the one of the goals.

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