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Semiconductor Industry and Hazardous Waste

Because of its central importance, the semiconductor industry is large and competitive, but it handles hazardous waste.

First and foremost, semiconductors are a crucial element in modern electronics, as they are a major component of many commonly used electronic devices, including smartphones, tablets and PCs, essentially all the modern devices that a considerable part of humanity has become dependent on in everyday life.

Most of the world’s semiconductor materials are produced overseas using chemical solvents and other methods that leave impurities and contaminants behind.

For example, according to Mivium, each manufacturing facility or fab, including manufacturing facilities in the United States, generates an average of 60,000 tons of waste per year, 36,000 tons of hazardous material waste per year, more than 4 billion gallons of water per year and more than 2 million kilowatt-hours of energy per year.

There are more than 500 such factories in the world and they have a continuous impact on the environment every day.

A semiconductor is a substance that conducts electricity in some, but not all circumstances.

Manufacturers can customize the conductivity of a semiconductor, such as introducing a sensitivity to heat or light, or altering the conductivity depending on the direction of current.

Semiconductor industry

Notable semiconductor chipmakers include Intel and Samsung Electronics, with Intel generating $58.4 billion and Samsung generating $65.6 billion in semiconductor revenue in 2022, placing them among the largest companies in terms of semiconductor industry revenue.

A side note: third-generation semiconductors using GaN are suitable for making high-power, radiation-resistant, high-frequency, high-temperature devices, including satellites, radar systems, electric vehicles, communication and fast-charging devices for cell phones, tablets and laptops, and artificial intelligence.

Mivium is an early-stage materials science development company focused on developing a next or third generation wide bandgap (WBG) semiconductor sector with a low carbon footprint.

 

Redacción Opportimes

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