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TSMC Unveils Cutting-Edge Semiconductor Facility in Japan, Chip Production Set for Second Half of 2024

TSMC is gearing up for the official inauguration of its inaugural semiconductor manufacturing facility in Japan on February 24, 2024, as reported by China Times citing Japanese media sources. Positioned as the most advanced logic fab in Japan, the fab near Kumamoto, on Kyushu Island, will leverage TSMC’s N28 (28nm-class) technologies to produce chips. The manufacturing processes include various N28 variants and the 22ULP fabrication process, catering to ultra-low-power applications.

All About TSMC Opening Semiconductor Facility in Japan

While these technologies may not be suitable for cutting-edge applications like advanced system-on-chips (SoCs), high-performance CPUs, or GPUs, they find relevance in automotive and consumer electronics components, meeting Japan’s substantial demand in these sectors. The long lifecycle of integrated circuits (ICs) is expected to sustain the relevance of these technologies.

The formal opening ceremony is scheduled for February 24, with chip production slated to commence in the latter half of 2024. There are speculations about a potential second fab in Japan equipped to handle TSMC’s N16-derived process technologies, spanning N16, N12, and N12e classes.

Upon reaching full operational capacity, the fab is projected to employ around 1,700 personnel. As of now, the facility has approximately 1,400 employees, and an additional 250 new graduates are anticipated to join in spring 2024, according to China Times. TSMC, recognized as the world’s leading contract chip manufacturer, is strategically expanding its footprint beyond Taiwan due to increased chip demand and geopolitical considerations.

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Collaborating with Sony in Japan, the fab near Kumamoto aims for a monthly production capacity of 45,000 wafer starts. The initial investment in the project was set at $7 billion, with the Japanese government providing subsidies. The final project cost remains undisclosed. In addition to its manufacturing endeavors, TSMC is in the process of establishing a research and development center in Japan and engaging in collaborative initiatives with the University of Tokyo.


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