Archive for May, 2023

Did China Ban Micron From Government Purchases? Short Answer, YES

China banned Micron from government purchases

The Chinese government recently took a significant step against an American semiconductor company Micron Technology with corporate headquarters in Boise, ID. The Cyberspace Administration of China announced that Micron, one of the largest producer of memory chips in the world, posed significant security risks to China’s critical information infrastructure supply chain. As a result, it ordered operators of critical national infrastructure to refrain from purchasing Micron’s products.

Experts believe that Micron became an apparent target for China due to its technology, which could be more easily replaced with chips from South Korean competitors such as Samsung and SK Hynix. In fact, just last month, the White House requested that South Korea’s chipmakers refrain from filling any market gap in China if the sale of Micron’s products were to be restricted.

China conveyed its decision to Micron during a meeting held in Beijing on Sunday.

Could this be backlash for the United States restricting Huawei products within its borders due to concerns over security risks? If you remember, the ban was implemented to protect the country’s critical information infrastructure from potential threats posed by Huawei’s technology. Several factors contributed to this decision.

One of the primary concerns is the alleged close relationship between Huawei and the Chinese government. There have been suspicions that Huawei’s equipment could potentially be used for unauthorized surveillance or cyberattacks, posing a threat to national security. The fear is that the Chinese government could exploit vulnerabilities in Huawei’s technology to gain access to sensitive information or disrupt critical networks.

Furthermore, the ban on Huawei products is also driven by concerns about intellectual property theft. The United States has accused Huawei of stealing trade secrets and engaging in unfair business practices, leading to legal disputes and a deterioration of trust between the two nations.

The US government has taken measures to protect its communication networks by restricting the use of Huawei equipment. These actions have included banning federal agencies from purchasing Huawei products and urging allies to follow suit. The concern is that relying on Huawei’s infrastructure could compromise the integrity and security of the country’s telecommunications networks.

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Micron Jumps 5% On Stock Price due to EUV Technology in Japan

Micron, EUV Technology, building

Micron Technology, a company that makes computer memory, experienced a nearly 5% increase in its stock price during early trading on Thursday. The reason for this boost is Micron’s announcement that it will introduce an advanced technology called extreme ultraviolet (EUV) in Japan. This technology will be used to produce the next generation of dynamic random access memory (DRAM).

Micron, headquartered in Boise, Idaho, stated that it is the first chip company to bring EUV technology to Japan for manufacturing. The company will be assisted by its facility in Hiroshima. Micron plans to invest up to $3.63 billion in the process over the next few years, with support from the Japanese government. The aim of this investment is to facilitate further technological advancements, particularly in emerging areas such as generative artificial intelligence applications.

Micron’s President and CEO, Sanjay Mehrotra, expressed his pride in being the first to implement EUV technology in Japan. He emphasized the significance of developing and producing 1-gamma at the Hiroshima facility. Mehrotra also acknowledged Micron’s commitment to Japan, its strong relationship with the Japanese government, and the exceptional skills of the Micron Hiroshima team.

Extreme Ultraviolet (EUV) technology is an advanced manufacturing technique used in the production of semiconductor devices, such as computer chips. It involves the use of extremely short-wavelength light, specifically in the range of 13.5 nanometers, which falls within the extreme ultraviolet part of the electromagnetic spectrum. EUV light has much shorter wavelengths than the ultraviolet light used in conventional chip manufacturing processes.

EUV technology offers several advantages over traditional lithography methods. The shorter wavelength of EUV light enables higher precision and resolution in creating smaller and more intricate circuit patterns on silicon wafers. This allows for the production of denser and more powerful semiconductor devices. Additionally, EUV technology reduces the complexity and number of process steps required in chip manufacturing, leading to increased efficiency and cost-effectiveness.

Implementing EUV technology in semiconductor fabrication requires specialized equipment and processes. It involves using a powerful EUV light source to project a pattern onto a silicon wafer coated with light-sensitive materials, known as photoresist. The pattern is transferred onto the wafer, forming the intricate circuitry and structures that make up the semiconductor device.

EUV technology represents a significant advancement in the semiconductor industry and enables the development of smaller, faster, and more energy-efficient chips. It plays a crucial role in meeting the increasing demand for higher-performing electronic devices and paves the way for future technological innovations.

Starting in 2025, Micron plans to gradually incorporate EUV technology into its manufacturing processes in Taiwan and Japan, specifically in the 1-gamma nodes.

Rahm Emanuel, the U.S. ambassador to Japan, highlighted the importance of the partnership between Micron and Japan, stating that it represents a significant advancement in securing the semiconductor supply chain. Emanuel also emphasized the potential for economic growth and security through collaboration in cutting-edge technologies.

The announcement follows reports that Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida was scheduled to meet with executives from various semiconductor companies, including Micron, to strengthen cooperation in the industry.

During a press conference on Wednesday, Chief Cabinet Secretary Hirokazu Matsuno emphasized that the semiconductor supply chain cannot be established by a single country alone. He stressed the importance of collaboration with like-minded countries and regions to achieve this goal.

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