Semiconductor makers spend most on cleanroom hardware in 2012

April 25, 2012 — Cleanroom hardware — modular rooms, ceilings, floors, walls HVAC, mini environments, and instrumentation — will be a $4 billion market this year, shows Cleanroom World Markets, by the McIlvaine Company.

The three big purchasers of cleanroom hardware this year will be the semiconductor, pharmaceutical and flat panel industries. The semiconductor segment also includes photovoltaic cell manufacture. This industry is rapidly growing and is a major purchaser of cleanroom hardware.

Table. Cleanroom hardware purchases in 2012, by end-use industry.

Industry

($M)

Semiconductor         

623

Pharmaceuticals

621

Flat Panels

596

Memory Storage

541

Other Semiconductor

431

Other Industries

324

Cleanroom Supplies

289

Hospital

209

Medical

157

Food

138

Bioclean

53

Aerospace

20

          TOTAL

4,002

The biggest portion of the market will be in Asia. Almost all the flat panel manufacturing capacity is situated in this region. Most new semiconductor plants are being built in China, Taiwan, and Korea. The replacement hardware market in Japan is also significant.

The pharmaceutical, bioclean and hospital markets are still larger in the US and Europe than in Asia.

While hospitals are adopting isolation rooms, and cleanrooms for operating theaters and pharmacies, a semiconductor cleanroom still remains far cleaner than the average hospital.

As semiconductor nodes shrink, filter manufacturers and cleanroom designers must offer products that remove the smallest possible particles. While hardware can accomplish much of this, recent research shows that the cleanliness of a room is a function of the motion of the employees in the room. Also read: Entegris builds advanced filtration and contamination control R&D center for 2X, 1X semiconductor fab

“Mini environments” originated in the semiconductor industry but are now widely used in the pharmaceutical industry as well.

For more information on World Cleanroom Markets, visit http://www.mcilvainecompany.com/brochures/cleanroom.html.

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