Explained: The unbelievably complex process of making semiconductor chips

The news of Foxconn-Vedanta's $19.5 billion semiconductor deal falling apart may be a temporary setback for India, striving to achieve its vision of becoming a major global hub in semiconductor manufacturing over the next decade. However, catching up with the global majors and setting up infrastructure may need more than a robust ecosystem, especially since it comes in the face of deteriorating demand for chips, particularly high-end, as the global economy contracts. Making the chips is an unbelievably complex and specialised process
Curated By: Madhu Kapparath
Published: Jul 13, 2023

Image by : Sam Yeh / AFP

  • Explained: The unbelievably complex process of making semiconductor chips
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An aerial view of Keelung Harbour, Taiwan, on August 4, 2022, as China held military exercises encircling Taiwan. Caught in the tug-of-war between the US and China, TSMC's success is a walk on the razor's edge. So it is for Taiwan, the island TSMC sits on. The Pentagon is pressuring the US government to invest more in advanced chipmaking locally so that its missiles and fighter jets are not dependent on Taiwan, a self-ruling island that China believes it owns and threatens to invade. This presents a quandary to Taiwan as American firms account for 65 percent of all TSMC sales while China, by virtue of its role as the world's factory, imported around $415 billion worth of chips in 2022 alone.