The US Is Investing in Semiconductors, You Should Too

By Logan Wamsley

In the wake of the Ukraine crisis, as well as the ongoing geopolitical tensions with China and the continued supply chain issues related to the COVID-19 pandemic, the U.S. is prioritizing semiconductor manufacturing on its own soil more than ever. Indeed, President Biden in his State of the Union address highlighted his push for new legislation that would resulting in $50 billion in government subsidies for U.S. chip manufacturers. Indeed, Intel CEO Pat Gelsinger, whose organization is investing $20 billion — and up to $100 billion — into chip manufacturing infrastructure in Ohio, was a noted guest for Biden’s speech.

“If you travel 20 miles east of Columbus, Ohio, you’ll find 1,000 empty acres of land. It won’t look like much, but if you stop and look closely, you’ll see a ‘Field of dreams,’ the ground on which America’s future will be built,” said Biden. “This is where Intel, the American company that helped build Silicon Valley, is going to build its $20 billion semiconductor ‘mega site’.”

Additionally, Intel has announced multi-billion dollar plans to build four total semiconductor fabrication plants — two in Ohio and two in Chandler, Arizona. Although some analysts are concerned about the scale of the investment and the impact it might have on short-term profit margins, the long-term opportunities posed in the next three-to-four years when production is planned to ramp up is significant. Additionally, while it will not make the U.S. completely self-sufficient in the chip manufacturing market, it will greatly reduce reliance on foreign partners and partially mitigate the effects of any future global supply chain disruptions. Currently, semiconductors are required to product 12% of the U.S. national output, and that figure is only expected to rise.

With such developments on the horizon, U.S. manufacturers would be remiss not to ramp up investments in their own semiconductor storage infrastructures. Much like the U.S.’ focus on domestic chip production does, maintaining a strong supply of inventory in-house would reduce global supply chain dependency. Such initiatives, however, require substantial upfront investments into the proper equipment and infrastructure in order to store raw die and wafer properly.

For manufactures who do wish to upgrade their infrastructure to support raw die and wafer banking, but do not have the capital available to do so, there exists the option of working with a trusted supply chain partner. Partstat, for example, offers customers full use of its industry-leading desiccant dry cabinets located within its custom storage vault. This way, even smaller manufacturers can realize the financial benefits of die and wafer banking without any of the upfront costs.

The world is becoming more globalized by the day, but in the face of risk, supply chains are looking to diversify by reducing dependency on any one inventory source. Investing in-house or in the services of a supply chain partner when possible is a great place to start.