News on electronic grade

News on suppliers, market trends and technology innovations in polysilicon and wafer production is selected, assessed and written for you by Bernreuter Research.

Arabinda Ghosh (left), designated Chairman and CEO of Hemlock Semiconductor, and Ken Collins, site leader of Wacker Chemical Corporation’s polysilicon and pyrogenic silica plants in Charleston, Tennessee

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Ken Collins is new site leader of Wacker’s polysilicon plant in Charleston, Tennessee while Arabinda Ghosh will follow Mark Bassett as CEO of competitor Hemlock Semiconductor at year’s end.

Polysilicon EBITDA margins of Daqo, OCI, Wacker and REC Silicon from Q2 2020 through Q2 2021

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While non-Chinese polysilicon manufacturers OCI and Wacker enjoy high margins, Xinjiang-based Daqo New Energy has already announced the next major expansion to 270,000 tons in China by the end of 2024.

REC Silicon’s silane/polysilicon plant in Butte, Montana

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After an equity raise, U.S.-based polysilicon manufacturer REC Silicon has abandoned its plan to sell its cash cow, the silane and electronic-grade polysilicon plant in Butte, Montana.

Groundbreaking for Asia Silicon’s polysilicon plant expansion in Xining, the capital of Qinghai province, China

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Asia Silicon, China’s sixth-largest polysilicon manufacturer, will increase its production capacity to 50,000 metric tons by 2022 and has closed a five-year supply contract with wafer maker Longi.

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In the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic, U.S.-based polysilicon manufacturer REC Silicon has deferred the sale of its electronic-grade plant in Butte. Its solar-grade plant in Moses Lake remains closed.

Sales, EBITDA and Capex of Wacker’s polysilicon division in Q1 2020 versus Q4 2019 and Q1 2019

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In response to slumping demand for solar-grade polysilicon in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic, chemicals group Wacker has reduced the utilization rate of its German polysilicon plants to 70%.

REC Silicon’s fluidized bed reactor polysilicon plant in Moses Lake, Washington at dusk

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As the Phase 1 trade agreement between the USA and China comes into force on February 15, U.S.-based polysilicon manufacturer REC Silicon intends to restart its plant in Moses Lake.

OCI’s polysilicon plant in Gunsan, South Korea

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The price pressure from low-cost Chinese plants forces OCI, the world’s third-largest polysilicon manufacturer, to stop producing solar-grade polysilicon at its factory in Gunsan, South Korea.

Polysilicon EBITDA margins of OCI, REC Silicon and Wacker from Q3 2018 through Q3 2019

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Polysilicon makers OCI, REC Silicon and Wacker all landed in red territory in the third quarter. Operating EBITDA margins ranged from -3.4% (OCI) to -9.3% (REC Silicon) to -13.3% (Wacker).

REC Silicon’s silane/polysilicon plant in Butte, Montana

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REC Silicon has announced considerations to sell its second plant, located in Butte in the U.S. state of Montana, which produces silane and electronic-grade polysilicon for the semiconductor industry.