Siltronic inaugurates extension to crystal pulling hall at Freiberg site
Siltronic AG officially inaugurated the extension to its crystal pulling hall at the Freiberg site today, Thursday. The new production area provides space for the latest generation of crystal pulling systems, which are used to produce silicon monocrystals for wafer production under cleanroom conditions. In total, several hundred million euros were invested in the construction and around 60 jobs were created.
"This investment is a clear commitment to our Saxon location. In addition, the modernization helps us to maintain our position as one of the world's technology leaders and it strengthens our position as the only major Western wafer manufacturer", said Dr. Michael Heckmeier, CEO of Siltronic AG, at the opening. The Freiberg site in Saxony is one of four production sites of the group, which manufactures in Germany, Singapore and the USA.
With a usable area of 20,000 square meters, the extension building is almost as large as three soccer fields. Here, man-sized silicon monocrystals are produced in a process that takes five to seven days. The so-called ingots have a diameter of around 300 millimeters and weigh several hundred kilograms. In a complex process under cleanroom conditions, they are processed into wafers – extremely thin slices of silicon. Siltronic's customers use the wafers to manufacture microchips, which can be found in everyday items such as tablets, smartphones and electric cars, as well as wind turbines and aircrafts. The semiconductor industry is receiving tailwind from the megatrends of artificial intelligence, digitization and electromobility.
Siltronic has invested more than one billion euros at the site since acquiring Freiberger Elektronikwerkstoffe GmbH in 1995. "With our investments, we believe we are well prepared for the future, to be at the forefront in a challenging market environment," Heckmeier explained. Currently around 1,000 people are employed at the site in Freiberg, Saxony.