How hard is it to build Semiconductor chips

Rhino

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The more I read about the Automobile industry not being able to produce cars because of the chip shortage makes me wonder what is so freaking hard about building these things. Try ordering a new TRX or GT 500 or a CT5 V all you will get is a Vin with no sure build or delivery date.. March 22 for upper optioned vehicles seems to be the estimated delivery times.

Sort of like when there was a mask shortage ...

Why are we waiting on China/Taiwan companies when America can just build a freaking factory and make the chips.. it disappoints me to see a country that in times of wars used to build Battleships in astounding turn around times not be able to solve basic business supply issues.
 

BIggerDanno

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There are a lot of steps in the manufacturing of the devices. See this Wiki link I was involved in the "packaging" step.
I'm not sure where the current bottleneck is that is causing the shortages, but it likely involves the lithography machines. There is only one manufacturer of the machines in the less than 12nm size. (EUV & DUV) They have a backlog of orders that is about two years out. This company is ASML
Very good growth stock!!

Edit. Just read up on what's causing the shortages, seems it is lack of wafer manufacturing capacity. This would be the raw material the chips are made from.
 
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All or most of the companies in silicon valley has moved overseas due to cost, cost of taxes esp in Santa Clara valley, that is why a lot of companies moved out of Sunnyvale, Santa Clara and so on. The software companies are staying here and moving into San Jose City area buying up all the old houses and turning them into hi-rise buildings for companies to use. Around where I live Amazon, Google, PayPal and so on are buying up the lands and causing the real-estate market to go through the roof. Shit box houses that cost $90K $100K in other states are going for over a million here. A one bed room apartment is renting for $3,500 average.

My friend worked in the chip making business and he said you have to wear clean suits and use special filtration air system in your manufacturing building.

You also used special chemicals and gasses that are Haz-mat controlled so it is easier to do you manufacturing overseas where OSHA and CARB and all the other tree hugging groups don't come done on you.
 

LuxPride

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The accounting dept's in the auto industry are the ones who should be taken out to pasture for this. They had their supply chain in order and broke it.
Considering the importance of the chips and their relatively small size (easier to store 100,000 chips vs tires). Why they decided to forgo their shipments is beyond me. They fucked themselves.
 

gobrian77

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Still doesn't explain why AMERICA can't build the needed chips. Fuck relying on the rest of the world
Here's an article that sheds some light- one takeaway is that building a new manufacturing facility can cost up to $20 billion, which is considerably more than it costs overseas:

 

gobrian77

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Investment in OUR future. Cut foreign aid .. build our own manufacturing needs with THAT money.
A large chunk of Biden's infrastructure plan goes to the semiconductor chip industry. $50 billion is earmarked specifically for the CHIPS Act, with hundreds of billions going to the science/technology and energy sectors. Even if foreign economic aid were reduced (there's no way it will be eliminated or even cut substantially), say, by 20% per year, that's still 'only' $10bil.


 

DungBeatle

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Excerpt:

The way to improve a chip's performance is to increase the number of transistors — the core elements that process data — without increasing its overall size. The new 2-nanometer chips are roughly the size of a fingernail, and contain 50 billion transistors, each about the size of two DNA strands, according to IBM vice president of hybrid cloud research Mukesh Khare.

Having more transistors will also allow more innovations related to artificial intelligence and encryption, among other things, to be added directly onto the chips.

"When we experience that the phone gets better, the cars get better, the computers get better, it is because behind the scenes, the transistor got better and we have more transistors available in our chips," Gil said.

The new chip is expected to achieve 45% higher performance — and about 75% lower energy usage — than today's most advanced 7-nanometer chips. With 2-nanometer chips, cell phone batteries could last four times longer, laptops could get markedly faster and the carbon footprints of data centers could be slashed as they rely on more energy efficient chips.

The 2-nanometer chips are expected to go into production starting in late 2024 or 2025, which won't be soon enough to make a dent in the current global chip shortage.
 

BarryW

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That shit's spilling into freight transport as well. In addition to a severe shortage of drivers, the trucking industry is suffering from a shortage of trucks because of the chip situation. Guess what happens when freight transport costs go up...you got it, inflation. Who knows how this circle jerk ends, but the global supply chain disruptions from COVID have fucked numerous systems in ways we're still trying to sort out. Tried to rent a car lately? Good fukkin luck!:2guns:
 
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This shortage is throwing the used vehicle market extremely off balance. When I picked up the Wife’s explorer ST, the sales douche said used vehicles are going 10-15% above blue book for trade ins at the moment. My 2020 GT500 is damn near $100k outright to the dealer…I’d make $12K after putting 4K miles on it in 3 months.
 

BIggerDanno

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Excerpt:

The way to improve a chip's performance is to increase the number of transistors — the core elements that process data — without increasing its overall size. The new 2-nanometer chips are roughly the size of a fingernail, and contain 50 billion transistors, each about the size of two DNA strands, according to IBM vice president of hybrid cloud research Mukesh Khare.

Having more transistors will also allow more innovations related to artificial intelligence and encryption, among other things, to be added directly onto the chips.

"When we experience that the phone gets better, the cars get better, the computers get better, it is because behind the scenes, the transistor got better and we have more transistors available in our chips," Gil said.

The new chip is expected to achieve 45% higher performance — and about 75% lower energy usage — than today's most advanced 7-nanometer chips. With 2-nanometer chips, cell phone batteries could last four times longer, laptops could get markedly faster and the carbon footprints of data centers could be slashed as they rely on more energy efficient chips.

The 2-nanometer chips are expected to go into production starting in late 2024 or 2025, which won't be soon enough to make a dent in the current global chip shortage.
The problem is that the technology to make 2nm chips does not yet exist. Current state of the art is 5nm.
This is the current state of the art machine.
 

Austin_F

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I just traded my 2020 Ram in on a 2021 because the dealer wanted my 2020 for their used lot. I got my lease bought out, got a nicer truck with no miles on it, and got my payment lowered. My old truck sold in 2 days for more than I gave for it last year.
We touched on this in another thread.

My 19 stinger has a buyout option of 20k (lease up this month) and the dealer wants to give me 28k for it. A few months ago they were offering 22k.

Im waiting for them to give me the numbers for the 22 stinger and if they look good ill upgrade.
 

Austin_F

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We touched on this in another thread.

My 19 stinger has a buyout option of 20k (lease up this month) and the dealer wants to give me 28k for it. A few months ago they were offering 22k.

Im waiting for them to give me the numbers for the 22 stinger and if they look good ill upgrade.

Just checked Carvana again. Same car, 200 more miles on it, now they will give me a bit over 29K !! I'm going to keep checking and if it hits 30K I'm hitting the 'sell' button.

I was at the dealer this afternoon talking numbers to get into a new 2022 stinger. They looked at my car and with a big smile said they are a KBB buyer and would give me $26,5. I looked up KBB on my phone right there and it showed a 27,7 trade-in value. That was from a few days ago. She says 'well we're pretty close then'. I hit refresh and it jumped to 28,2. She's like 'man, i don't know if i can get them to give you that.' I told her she had my number, if she buys my car and gives me a check for 8k ill do it and get into the new one. They have $2500 lease cash AND a 'secret' that I saw on her desk when she was out for a minute. Worth another $500.

Then I come home and carvana has gone up to $29, I sent her the screenshot and said 'your move' heh heh

I know they're crooked. She had a note on her desk that said 'need car, $12,000. Payment $300 to hide 3k neg equity' I dont know what hide means in this case, im sure its not good for customer.

Which is why i do all my research then walk in with MY numbers and tell them to take it or leave it. With the shortage of new cars due to semiconductor issue the advantage is ours if we are smart about it.
 

Drakhen

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I know they're crooked. She had a note on her desk that said 'need car, $12,000. Payment $300 to hide 3k neg equity' I dont know what hide means in this case, im sure its not good for customer.
That's some sleazy shit that will probably bite that customer in the ass later on, like when they try to trade that 12k car in in 3 or 4 years, and it's only worth 5k as a trade, but they still owe 6 on it. They're probably also about to get stuck with a stupid interest rate. It's truly amazing the ridiculous deals some finance companies will sign off on.
 
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How hard is it to build Semiconductor chips?
It's very difficult and very expensive. There are hundreds of steps involved and any slight fuck up in the process could scrap hundreds or thousands of chips and the multi-week process has to be started all over. I worked in the industry for 17 years (Motorola, Intel, others) and it's definitely an interesting process. It involved scores of toxic fucking chemicals (arsenic, silicon tetrafluoride, boiling sulfuric acid, hydroflouric acid, etc..) that have to be stored, used, and disposed of properly. The last new fab I started up was in ~1994, Motorola COM 1, and it cost 1.5 billion dollars. It was a relatively small fab. I think one of the pieces of equipment (of many I was in charge of) was 2.3 million. I primarily worked in implant (ion implantation- Ion implantation - Wikipedia), but worked in all the areas over the years.
 
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