SEMICON West 2011— What a Week it Was!

From the President of SEMI Americas

SEMICON West 2011— What a Week it Was!

The big show may be over, but the buzz continues around what many in the industry felt was the best SEMICON West in years. With more people (31,000 attendees, an increase of 5% over 2010), more exhibitors (746, +19%), and more booths (127,300 square feet occupied, +11%), this year's show was indeed bigger, but there's more to this year's success than just a bigger show. On multiple levels, SEMICON West hit the right notes, addressing the key technology and business issues, and bringing together more people from across the industry supply chain.

The week's events were highlighted by a strong line-up of keynotes, executive panels, and technical sessions focused on current critical technology developments and business trends. Keynotes included strong presentations from ASE's Tien Wu, Rama K Shukla from Intel, and imec CEO Luc Van den hove. Sessions at the TechXPOT stages— now in their sixth year— addressed topics ranging from new device architectures (including the latest developments in vertical transistors), 3D-IC, next-generation lithography, contemporary packaging, and test. A panel session on the 450 mm wafer transition drew a standing room-only crowd on Thursday— traditionally a slower day at SEMICON West— proving that the right topic can find an audience any day of the week.

This year's SEMICON West also featured an expanded focus on specialized pavilions, exhibit areas, and networking events focused on key market segments and topics. The Extreme Electronics "TechZONE" continues to gain momentum as suppliers and customers alike expand their reach into emerging and adjacent markets including high-brightness LEDs, MEMS, flexible electronics, and energy products. The Secondary Equipment and Services TechZONE also grew this year as the market for used equipment expands and as device makers look for new productivity solutions to help maximize production and lower costs. And the new Advanced Manufacturing TechZONE brought an entire new segment and audience to SEMICON West, showcasing solutions for IC designers and fabless companies. The special exhibit area brought notable first-time participation from exhibitors including Amkor, ASE, GLOBALFOUNDRIES, IBM, Mentor Graphics, and Samsung. Finally, the new Advanced Materials TechZone struck a chord with attendees interested in learning about critical new materials requirements for manufacturing.

New this year also was our partnership with Solid State Technology Magazine in presenting the Best of West Award, which honors new technologies that promise to have significant impact on microelectronics manufacturing. Congratulations go out to this year's winner SigmaTech, recognized for their UltraMap TSV metrology system, and to the Best of West finalists CyberOptics Semiconductor and MonolithIC 3D.

Not content to sit back and rest on our accomplishments of this year, we are already looking ahead to SEMICON West 2012. Exhibitor response and interest in early booking has exceeded expectations and the 2012 show is already more than 75% sold. If you haven't done so already, mark your calendars now for SEMICON West 2012, July 10-12, in San Francisco.

Karen Savala