Opto Semiconductors will step up its production output by converting its two chip manufacturing facilities to 6-inch wafers while expanding production at both plants. A new production building is currently under construction in Penang, Malaysia, while in Regensburg, Germany, the existing space is being reallocated. The two facilities will each be converting to the new manufacturing technology, introducing 6-inch wafers to replace the current 4-inch wafers. These measures are expected to almost double the chip production capacity for white LEDs by the end of 2012.
The capacity expansion will primarily affect InGaN chips employing thin-film and UX:3 technology, which are required in the production of white LEDs. In the new production facilities, these chips will be manufactured on 6-inch wafers from the start and no longer on wafers with a 4-inch diameter.
With this move, OSRAM Opto Semiconductors is positioning itself to capitalize on the growth of international LED markets. When this expansion is complete, the Penang chip manufacturing plant will have approximately 25,000 sqm (269,000 sq. ft.) and employ 400 more workers. No additional space is being created at the Regensburg plant. Instead, the production facilities are being switched over to LED production and may be operational as early as the summer of 2011.