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Samsung Electronics holds the 2023 Bi-annual Semiconductor Tech Seminar to strengthen Korean semiconductor ecosystem

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The bi-annual ‘Semiconductor Tech Seminar 2023’ was held at Samsung Electronics’ DS Win-Win Cooperation Academy on June 28th. Marking its’ 5th year, since 2019, the seminar, hosted by Samsung Electronics, invites Korean semiconductor suppliers across the supply chain to provide latest technical progresses and market trends. The overarching goal of the event is to strengthen Korean semiconductor suppliers’ competitiveness within the semiconductor ecosystem by enhancing their technical capabilities and helping suppliers derive resolution to existing dilemmas.
This year the main theme of the event was “The Latest Trends in the Semiconductor Industry and a Case Study of Innovations in Semiconductor Equipment Technology," and nearly 900 participated the event, 108 on-site and 776 online, reflecting the strong interest of semiconductor industry and the seminar. Elevating technical capabilities of semiconductor suppliers, an essential task to enhance competitiveness of the semiconductor industry ecosystem. The seminar was kicked off by Ki-Hyun Ahn, the Executive Director of the Semiconductor Industry Association, on the topic of "Recent Semiconductor Industry Trends and Our Future. Ahn commenced his address by highlighting the changes occurring in the semiconductor industry ecosystem. He emphasized that for the past 70 years, the semiconductor industry has operated in a fragmented structure, with companies around the world sourcing raw materials and components to produce products at low cost and high efficiency. However, it is now a global trend to diversify component sourcing and production in anticipation of unforeseen risks such as interstate conflicts or pandemics.
Ahn went on to say "Samsung Electronics, with its world's leading manufacturing technology, has a long history of using the best materials, components, and equipment. However, it must also prepare for future difficulties of procuring materials, components, and equipment due to its heavy reliance on foreign imports. As such, to alleviate geographical risks the revitalization of South Korea’s semiconductor industry and growth of small and medium-sized domestic semiconductor companies is essential. Moreover the industry players must be driven by the determination to become global companies and strive to develop technological capabilities that can par other global companies by continuing R&D, making bold investments, and developing better talents. To this end, Samsung Electronics' role as a leader in the semiconductor industry ecosystem has become even more important.", an emphasis in respect to the responsibilities and roles Samsung Electronics and Korean semiconductor supplier have for the market.
He ended with a note "As a leading company in the semiconductor industry ecosystem, Samsung Electronics must continue to communicate with South Korea’s material, component, and equipment companies to enhance its technological capabilities and seek sustainable development." Ahn added, "A win-win cooperation and robust partnerships between Samsung Electronics and its suppliers are essential to enhance our competitiveness in the rapidly changing global supply chain." Working together to build a sustainable semiconductor industry Up next, Ji-Ho Uh from Samsung Electronics' Facilities & Materials Technology Team delivered a presentation on "The Future of Semiconductor Facilities-The Future of the Semiconductor Fab, Samsung's Dream Future". At the session Uh outlined current technical road map from a facility point of view and touched on a range of questions from ‘Fab construction from a facility perspective’, ‘Changes in the internal and external environment’, ‘the importance of streamlining facility operations’, ‘optimizing facility layout and area efficiency’, to the ‘automation of facility operations’.
Uh emphasized the importance of "digitalizing facilities and parts data for automated intelligence and system centered work" because "the advent of work powered by artificial intelligence without human intervention, is inevitable. The current focus should be on embedding the expertise of on-field engineers into these systems and accomplishing this task will require diverse, observable, and credible data derived from devices and components." He added, "Each of these sophisticated, distributed systems needs be connected and integrated to become an intelligent system. As such standardization of data between semiconductor devices and components will also be essential because the amount of data increases will in correlation to components progress.”
The seminar also hosted guest from ASML, a Dutch semiconductor manufacturer, Sung-Min Heo, who presented on the innovations in semiconductor equipment production technology, and Eung-Jun Lee of ULVAC KOREA to imbue further stimulus to participants.
The seminar ended with success as Young-Geun Lee, the head of the design team at STI, who attended the seminar reflects "We have been thinking deeply about our technical roadmap, and I think we have found the answer to our direction through today's seminar." "I think Samsung Electronics is a lighthouse for small and medium-sized Korean semiconductor companies. Just as a ship out on a dark sea can navigate safely by seeing the beam from a lighthouse, small and medium-sized Korean semiconductor companies can develop and grow alongside Samsung Electronics. We will continue to grow and cooperate with Samsung Electronics to contribute to the further development and competitiveness of the semiconductor ecosystem." As the importance of sustainable supply chains grows, so is the individual responsibilities and roles of semiconductor companies become more important. The semiconductor industry is not only about manufacturing, but also about materials, components, and equipment. A healthy semiconductor ecosystem can be built when each contributors of the industry is harmonize and synergize. Semiconductor companies, including Samsung Electronics, must work together in pursuit of mutual benefit and cooperation. In the latter half of the year, Samsung Electronics plans to host another tech seminar to address the needs of Korean semiconductor suppliers. The company is committed to bolstering the competitiveness of the ecosystem and enhancing the technical capabilities of Korean semiconductor suppliers through various collaborative, mutually beneficial initiatives.