DRAM prices increase over Q3 and Q4 2017

As reported in the following link:


Samsung has noticeably raised the quotes of its products in the mobile DRAM market.
Prices of mobile DRAM products could go up by 10% to 20% in Q4 compared to Q3

Also in the server DRAM market, strong demand is expected to push prices of memory modules by 6% to 10%

Prices of mobile DRAM products could go up by 10% to 20% in the fourth quarter compared with the third.


Global revenue ranking of branded DRAM manufacturers (unit: USD Million)
Global revenue ranking of branded DRAM manufacturers (unit: USD Million)

Wafer capacity as in 2000 leads to price increases in used fab equipment

From http://evertiq.com/news/42966 :

IC Makers maximise 300mm, 200mm wafer capacity

A total of 25 new 300mm wafer fabs is expected between 2016 and 2021 as the outlook for 450mm wafers fades, writes market researcher IC Insights.

With the prospects of large 450mm wafers going nowhere, IC manufacturers are increasing efforts to maximise fabrication plants using 300mm and 200mm diameter silicon substrates. The number of 300mm wafer production-class fabs in operation worldwide is expected to increase each year between now and 2021 to reach 123 compared to 98 in 2016, according to the forecast in IC Insights’ Global Wafer Capacity 2017-2021 report.

icinsights wafer capacity

300mm wafers represented 63.6 percent of worldwide IC fab capacity at the end of 2016 and are projected to reach 71.2 percent by the end of 2021, which translates into a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 8.1 percent in terms of silicon area for processing by plant equipment in the five-year period.

The IC Insights report’s count of 98 production-class 300mm fabs in use worldwide at the end of 2016 excludes numerous R&D front-end lines and a few high-volume 300mm plants that make non-IC semiconductors (such as power transistors). Currently, there are eight 300mm wafer fabs that have opened or are scheduled to open in 2017, which is the highest number in one year since 2014 when seven were added. Another nine are scheduled to open in 2018. Virtually all these new fabs will be for DRAM, flash memory, or foundry capacity.

Even though 300mm wafers are now the majority wafer size in use, both in terms of total surface area and in actual quantity of wafers, there is still much life remaining in 200mm fabs, the capacity report concludes. IC production capacity on 200mm wafers is expected to increase every year through 2021, growing at a CAGR of 1.1 percent in terms of total available silicon area. However, the share of the IC industry’s monthly wafer capacity represented by 200mm wafers is forecast to drop from 28.4 percent in 2016 to 22.8 percent in 2021.

IC Insights believes there is still much life left in 200mm fabs because not all semiconductor devices are able to take advantage of the cost savings 300mm wafers can provide. Fabs running 200mm wafers will continue to be profitable for many more years for the fabrication of numerous types of ICs, such as specialty memories, display drivers, microcontrollers, and RF and analog products. In addition, 200mm fabs are also used for manufacturing MEMS-based ‘non-IC’ products such as accelerometers, pressure sensors, and actuators, including acoustic-wave RF filtering devices and micro-mirror chips for digital projectors and displays, as well as power discrete semiconductors and some high-brightness LEDs.


Stephen Howe (SDI CEO) comment :

In the used semiconductor instruments sector, it’s interesting to note we have reached the same status as in the year 2000.

That is to say shortages of many key items of fab equipment. This is leading to sharp price increases for popular equipment models.

The major difference between now and the year 2000 is that in these times, there are roughly 1000 used equipment dealers worldwide, whereas in the year 2000, there were only 50-100 brokers worldwide.


Yours sincerely,

Stephen Howe
Company Owner
SDI Fabsurplus Group



SDI-Fabsurplus September 2017 Used Semiconductor Equipment Sales List

Dear Customers and Friends,

Established in 1998, Fabsurplus.comis one of the most popular web markets for used Wafer Fab, Semiconductor Test, Assembly, SMT and Solar Equipment.
We have sales agents and offices in Europe, America and Asia.

We’ve prepared a list of recently added equipment for September 2017 in Excel format

Click here to download September 2017 Equipment List

These items are also listed for sale at our website, www.fabsurplus.com

If you’d like to buy any items, then please send a reply to this message or visit our website and send us an inquiry. We look forwards to getting your equipment requests very soon.


We’ve upgraded our website with a simplified layout and new features.

Register to sell your equipment via our website here:-


and then follow this link to post it :-


It’s Easy !

Now you can also see the list of tools we need to buy here:-

More improvements will follow over the coming months.

Refurbishing a Nikon Stepper : A SDI Success Story

The scope of the project described here was of allowing our client to see the Nikon NSR 1755i7A stepper we have in temperature controlled storage working and exposing wafers to the best possible resolution at our clean facility in Avezzano, Italy, and then crating the equipment for shipment to our customer.

Required Environment

In order to succeed putting into the best working environment conditions the Nikon Stepper, the following were the required actions to be taken:

  • temperature in clean area needed to be tabilized to 21° degrees Celsius with 1° degree tolerance.
  • A cleanroom at class 10 level, to allow easy measurement of exposed wafers without excessive contamination levels.
  • the stepper requires a supply of clean , particle free, 4ry air.
  • the stepper requires vacuum.
  • the stepper requires 18 l/min cooling water at 21° Celsius.
  • the stepper requires about 25 KW electricity supply, i.e. about 25A / phase 3 phase 5 wire.

Meeting the requirements


Stabilized temperature

This was achieved via a Sharp air conditioner/heat pump model AY-XP-18GR of capacity 5.0 kW in cooling and 5.7 kW in heating. Maximum power consumption is 2.8 KW. To avoid heat generation, the cleanroom is lit using exclusively fluorescent lamps.


A class 10 cleanroom

This was achieved using a total of 16 filter fan units mounted in a cleanroom area of 20 square meters.

The frame of the cleanroom was constructed in steel with plexiglass panels screwed onto the steel frame and glued in place with low particle production silicon sealant.

The floor is covered with anti-static cleanroom tiling with an earthed grid running under the floor, with 2 earthing points to prevent the buildup of electrical charges within the cleanroom structure.

The chase area is separated from the clean area at a height of 70 cm. The gowning area is situated in front of the entrance door and includes a further two filters to provide a laminar flow during gowning.

Measurements with a PMS Lasair 110 (see picture on the right) showed that the cleanroom was at class 10 level.

During operation at class 10 levels, personnel wear cleanroom clothing consisting of a full body cleanroom suit, a mutex hood, face mask, plastic overshoes and gloves.


Supplying clean, particle free dry air


We achieved this via a Kaeser SX6 4KW screw compressor, a reservoir, a Kaeser model DC5.8 dryer, and a series of 3 particle filters.

The compressor has a maximum 9 bar operating pressure. The reservoir is of capacity 500 litres. There is a filter type Kaiser ZK01 between the screw compressor and the 500 litre reservoir. There is an Kaiser Ecodty 21 plus filter unit on the air outlet of the reservoir.

At the outlet of the air dryer are mounted 2 air particle filters, Kaiser FC10 and FFG10.


Creating Vacuum

In order to provide vacuum to the equipment, an Edwards E2M40 oil rotary backing pump was used.


The Water Cooling system

As the stepper requires 18 l/min cooling water at 21° Celsius, we investigated different options.
Our initial plan was to use Neslab chillers.
However, it was discovered that the pumping capacity of the chillers was insufficient to generate the required pressure at the machine water inlet.
The pressure and the flow were monitored, and we connected 3 Neslab HX150 units in parallel.
This produced a flow of about 10 l/ min at 2-3 bar inlet pressure, which was not sufficient.
We then connected an electric wafer pump of capacity 20-70 l/min and power consumption 3.75 kW on the inlet line.
We fitted the pump with a safety cutout system to avoid damage to the pump in the case that water supply was interrupted.
The atmospheric pressure reservoirs of the Neslab HX 150 chillers were connected using tubing of 50 mm diameter so as to allow any flow imbalances to be obviated.
The above system was able to supply to the machine in operation a flow of around 20-22 litres/minute of cooling water at a temperature of circa 18° Celsius at the ingress.
The supply was at a pressure reaching peaks of 5 bar. The internal diameter of the tube to supply the machine was 12 mm.
It would be possible, and desirable, to increase the flow and reduce the required inlet pressure by increasing the diameter of the water supply pipe to an ID of 20-30 mm. We measured the water flow rate using a Kobold DFWMA water flow meter.


Starting up the system

After the stepper had been positioned in the cleanroom, we levelled the system, and connected the facility supplies, checking their correct functioning.
We re-charged the refrigerant and checked the beam delivery optics, together with the alignment system. We then overhauled the stage and we run a stage drive test to test accuracy. The power of the lamp transmitted to the wafer surface was verified.
We exposed pre-coated wafers using the Nikon test reticle, and regulated focus.
We then manually developed the exposed wafers in a photoresist developer bath.

The wafers were observed using an Olympus BHMJL inspection microscope, with a maximum 50X magnification.
A Sony digital camera with 3x optical and 10x digital zoom was mounted on the microscope and photos of the wafer showing a resolution of better than 0.45 um were obtained by illuminating the wafer with a 100 watt 12 V light source.


Crating and loading the equipment


Here you can see photo galleries related to the crating and loading the Nikon Stepper.





Search for Nikon used equipment available at www.fabsurplus.com