Showa Denko has announced that it will acquire assets concerning the sublimation-recrystallisation method of manufacturing SiC wafers from Nippon Steel & Sumitomo Metal Corporation (NSSMC) and Nippon Steel & Sumikin Materials (NSMAT) by the end of January 2018.
Showa Denko began research and development of SiC epitaxial wafers in 2005, and now produces and sells 3,000 epitaxial wafers per month. The company aims to improve the quality of its products through the acquisition of assets currently owned by Nippon Steel & Sumitomo Metal Group.
NSSMC has been researching and developing 150-mm (6-inch) SiC single crystal wafers for power semiconductor devices at the Advanced Technology Research Laboratories under the R & D Laboratories. In addition, NSMAT has been developing a business for 100-mm (4-inch) wafers.
NSSMC succeeded in developing 4-inch SiC wafers in 2007 by drawing on the technologies nurtured through steelmaking. Then, NSMAT started business development towards establishing a practical manufacturing technology and quality for such wafers based on the success. NSMAT has been offering SiC wafers to customers. However, as it would take more time to develop this market, the NSSMC group decided to terminate the research and business development as part of the selection and concentration of business operations.
In its ongoing medium-term business plan ‘Project 2020+’ Showa Denko positions its business to produce and sell SiC epitaxial wafers for power devices as an ‘Advantage-establishing’ business. It aims to further strengthen its product development and supply system for SiC epitaxial wafers, aiming to contribute to the spread of SiC-based power devices.