Stimulated by Demand for Consumer Electronics, the Market for Electrostatic Chucks for Wafers is Growing Rapidly

The electrostatic chuck for wafers is a clamping fixture that uses the principle of electrostatic adsorption to clamp and fix the adsorbed material, which is used in various semiconductor processes to fix wafers during processing. The electrostatic chuck uses a platen with integral electrodes to clamp wafers by establishing an electrostatic holding force between the platen and the wafer through high voltage bias. It is suitable for vacuum and plasma environments, and its main function is to adsorb ultra-clean wafers (such as silicon wafers) to keep the adsorbed material flat. It inhibits the deformation of the adsorbed material during the process and regulates the temperature of the adsorbed material. Compared with mechanical chucks, electrostatic chucks for wafers reduce mechanical moving parts, reduce particle contamination, and increase the effective area of wafers. Compared to vacuum chucks, electrostatic chucks can be used in low-pressure (vacuum) environments for applications that require the chuck to control the temperature of the wafer. Therefore, there is a continuous demand for electrostatic chucks for wafers.

There are two types of electrostatic chucks for wafers, the Coulomb type electrostatic chucks and the Johnson-Rahbeck (J-R) type electrostatic chucks. Coulomb type electrostatic chucks are considered to be the key technology for the next generation of extreme ultraviolet lithography. During the fabrication process, electrostatic pressure holds the photomasks in a vacuum. Due to its thick dielectric thickness, the field strength of the Coulomb type is lower than that of the J-R type. The voltage drop in the dielectric layer is almost the same as the source voltage because the resistance of the dielectric layer is very high and the leakage current is very small. One of the advantages of this type is that the residual clamping force can be removed relatively easily after the applied voltage is cut off, since the charge is induced by the electric field only. Compared to the Coulomb-type electrostatic chucks, the Johnson-Rahbeck (JR) type electrostatic chucks exhibit some superior performance. This superiority is reflected in a stronger clamping force for a given clamping voltage (or a lower clamping voltage for a given clamping force) and a relaxation of the material and processing criteria for dielectric fabrication. The higher the clamping force, the higher the back pressure; therefore, a higher heat transfer capacity can be obtained.

Electrostatic chucks are commonly used for 300 mm diameter wafers, 200 mm diameter wafers, 150 mm diameter wafers, etc. In 2020, the market share of each application is 66.01%, 26.95%, and 3.59%, respectively. As the global economy grows, the downstream application industry for electrostatic chucks for wafers is also expanding, especially in the 150 mm wafer market. The expansion of the downstream application industry continues to play an active role in the expansion of the electrostatic chucks for wafers market.

Asia Pacific is Competitive and China Will Become a New Growth Point

Asia Pacific is the largest revenue market in the electrostatic chucks for the wafers industry, with market shares of 57.67% and 60.12% in 2015 and 2019, respectively, up 2.45% year-on-year. In 2019, North America ranked second with a market share of 21.82%.

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The main sales companies of electrostatic chucks for wafers are from Asia and North America; the industry concentration rate is high. The top three companies are SHINKO, Applied Materials, and NTK CERATEC, with revenue market shares of 28.69%, 16.11%, and 9.63%, respectively, in 2019.

The development of electrostatic chucks for the wafers industry is closely related to the demand for wafer equipment. In recent years, with the country\'s increased investment in the semiconductor field, China\'s wafer equipment procurement has increased year by year, which has driven the increase in the procurement of core components such as electrostatic chucks for wafers. In addition, with the construction and expansion of wafer production capacity in mainland China, China has become the focus of global wafer production growth, providing excellent opportunities for the development of electrostatic chucks for wafers.

In many developing countries wafer with electrostatic chuck development time is relatively short, currently in the initial stage, the market competitiveness is weak. International giants have long controlled the global supply chain of electrostatic chucks for wafers, and the market is highly concentrated. In addition to a few international giants, most other companies are still in the research and development stage, and these companies can only repair and replace the electrostatic chucks for wafers at present, and are still immature in terms of production. In addition, electrostatic chucks for wafers need to be equipped with skilled operators for the equipment to work optimally. Therefore, operators must undergo certain training to make use of the equipment, which requires a lot of investment in manpower and material resources.

Growing Demand for Consumer Electronics Drives the Electrostatic Chucks for Wafers Market

According to the research findings, the global electrostatic chucks for wafers market was valued at a total of USD 163.81 million in 2015, increasing to USD 206.42 million in 2019. Active industrial policies and active social capital in various countries around the world are supporting the development of the wafer industry from various angles and perspectives, which together promote the steady progress of semiconductor-supporting equipment such as electrostatic chucks for wafers, creating opportunities for the development and market growth of electrostatic chucks for wafers. Therefore, we forecast the market value of electrostatic chucks for wafers to reach USD 283.56 million by 2025. electrostatic chucks for wafers will grow at a CAGR of 5.42% from 2020 - 2025.

Growing market demand for consumer electronics such as smartphones, tablets, and other electronic devices is one of the major reasons for the rapid growth of the global electrostatic chucks for wafers market. Due to the growing demand for consumer electronics devices, the number of wafer electronics fabs is also increasing globally. The changing requirements for wafer quality and dust protection in different electronic devices have also increased the demand for electrostatic chucks for wafers.

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