Another factory fire hits global chip supply


A serious fire at the semiconductor manufacturing factory of Renesas Electronics Corporation in Naka, north east Japan, last week1(9th March) has added to problems of component supply for the electronics industry.

The fire, which began at 2.47 am and was caused by an electrical fault, destroyed a large clean room in which the chips were made. It took nearly six hours to extinguish – fortunately no one was injured.

“Being a proactive supplier, OSIE UK is constantly monitoring for supply chain issues as part of our service to all our customers,” says John Harley, OSI Electronics UK’s Director Business Development UK & EMEA.

“While this fire is not nearly as devastating as the one which destroyed the Asahi Kasei Microsystems‘ (AKM) semiconductor plant last November, it once again highlights the need to work closely with your EMS provider to ensure continuity of supply, not just for current orders but throughout 2021 and into 2022."

Renesas is a key supplier of automotive semiconductors – the fire, in its N3 building, has temporarily halted production of its 300 mm wafers.

As OSI Electronics highlighted in its Snap shot reports for February and March, many OEMs are already struggling with a global chip shortage due to the COVID-19-driven boom in consumer electronics and an unexpected strong rebound in car sales.

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