A powerful earthquake measuring 6.4 hit the Southern Taiwan on February 6 and several semiconductor, optoelectronic and photovoltaic players at the Southern Taiwan Science Park (STSP) had their production lines shut down. Prominent companies based in the park include TSMC, InnoLux Corporation, and United Microelectronics Corporation.
Since the lines were in mid-production, the affected companies will first need to clear their semi-finished products and scraps from the production lines before assuming operations.
TSMC said that the earthquake did not cause any serious personnel injuries nor any structural or facility damage to the company’s Fab 14 and Fab 6 manufacturing sites in the Tainan Science Park. The earthquake also did not cause equipment to shift position.
Damage to wafers in progress remains under assessment, but TSMC’s initial estimate is that more than 95 percent of the tools can be fully restored to normal in two to three days. The company is deploying personnel from Hsinchu and Taichung sites to support recovery in Tainan, and does not expect the earthquake to affect first quarter 2016 wafer shipment by more than 1 percent.
UMC said that the earthquake had limited impact its operations. The automatic safety measures at Fab 12A in Tainan, Taiwan did trigger and an automatic equipment shutdown that affected work-in-progress wafers. UMC says hat normal operations are resuming and wafer shipments will not be affected. UMC's Hsinchu fabs were not affected, and the company expects no meaningful impact on its business.