Industry to Address Energy Conservation at SEMICON Europa

Industry to Address Energy Conservation at SEMICON Europa

Energy Conservation is a topical issue for all levels of the semiconductor industry supply chain. Suppliers and users need to jointly drive reduction in energy consumption and resource conservation to reduce the industry’s carbon footprint. Proven, practical and profitable ideas on how to reduce fab resource requirements will be presented at the Energy Conservation Symposium at SEMICON Europa on Tuesday, 7 October, 13:30 – 17:00 at the International Congress Center, Stuttgart, Germany.

Significant energy savings and greenhouse gas reduction opportunities abound to today’s most advanced fabs. Many of these opportunities require close collaboration between chip makers, equipment providers and subsystem providers. Working with other industry groups such as the World Semiconductor Council, ISMI and others, SEMI is actively engaged in uncovering and disseminating productive solutions to resource and energy conservation.

Engineers at AMD sites worldwide have executed dozens of projects that improve energy efficiency. Some of the most prominent successes and the Giga watt hours in electricity saved include:

  • Idling of air handlers in administrative areas during low occupancy periods in Dresden (~9.3 GWh/yr),
  • Replacement of a large electrical in-coming air heater with a more efficient heat transfer fluid system in Dresden (~2.8 GWh/yr),
  • Upgrade of old chillers with a more efficient system in Sunnyvale (~2.1 GWh/yr).

TI has been able to save over $150 million in energy savings at their Richardson, Texas 300 mm fab just on five “big ticket items”. These include: space efficiency (saved $44 million), electrical reductions in system size and complexity (saved $42 million), chemical and gas improvements ($32 million), mechanical engineering ($22 million), and changes in the water plant ($10 million). In addition, TI will save $1 million in operating costs in the first full year, and at full build out, more than $4 million per year—due to a 20% energy reduction, 35% water-use reduction, and 50% emissions reduction (for more information, click here).

The most prominent energy use and saving opportunities impacting the industry involve process tools and vacuum pumps. Process tools currently account for approximately 40% of the total energy consumption in fabs today, and vacuum pumps consume an estimated 52% of that total. Reducing energy consumption in vacuum pumps is difficult, involving complex interrelationships between compression, pumping speed, inlet and outlet pressure, and other variables. Newer semiconductor manufacturing technologies such as low K and high k processes and low temperature PECVD are also increasing pump power requirements. Pump power consumption could be reduced by as much as 50% if appropriate technologies were utilized and all variables were optimized, representing a major untapped opportunity for energy saving in today’s fabs.

SEMI Technology Symposium: Energy Conservation


  • Introduction: Overview on Committees and Activities in the SC Industry
  • Legislative Regulations: Regulations and Incentives for Energy Conservation in EU
  • Industry Standards: Overview of Energy Conservation Standards (TBD)
  • Industry Facilities: High Energy Efficient Wafer Fab Requirements, Status and Future Potentials
  • OEM Contribution: Eco Efficient Equipment Design and Cost Reductions
  • OEM Contribution: Realization of Cost Reduction Potentials by Applying Eco Efficiency Engineering
  • Fab / IDM: Energy Conservation in a Semiconductor Fab
  • Fab / IDM: Carbon Footprint Reduction Program at ST

For more information on the symposium and to register, click here for information on the SEMICON Europa site.

Major industry players have started to incorporate “Energy Conservation” into their corporate policies and are now adopting SEMI Standards S23 (Guide for Conservation of Energy, Utilities and Materials Used by Semiconductor Manufacturing Equipment). SEMI S23 is now becoming a purchase requirement for most device makers worldwide. S23 calls for the quantification of energy, utilities & materials consumption, as well as measurement, monitoring together with ongoing target settings for improvements. For more information on SEMI International Standards, visit