From last September, when China explicitly proposed the goal of carbon peaking and carbon neutrality at the United Nations General Assembly, to this year when the “dual carbon” goal of the National Two Sessions was written into the government work report, the popularity of carbon neutrality has continued unabated. Currently, the development of global macro trends such as demographic and social changes, climate change and resource scarcity, urbanization and digital transformation pose challenges to human society and highlight the increasing importance of semiconductors in our lives. As a large consumer of electricity and water, how semiconductor companies play their role in this carbon neutral trend has also attracted industry attention.
As one of the top ten semiconductor companies in the world and Infineon, which ranks first in the fields of automotive electronics, power semiconductors and security ICs, Infineon has set a “binding emission reduction target” in 2020, and Infineon has also become the first company A semiconductor company that promises to be “carbon neutral”. Its goal is to reduce carbon dioxide emissions by 70% compared with 2019 by 2025 and achieve carbon neutrality by 2030.
Infineon is confident in achieving carbon neutrality
According to Fan Yongxin, Vice President of Infineon Technologies and Head of Infineon Wuxi’s Manufacturing, R&D, Test Technology and Innovation Department, “Climate change” is a global challenge that requires concerted action from all stakeholders throughout society , to deal with it together. Infineon takes “making life more convenient, safe and environmentally friendly” as its mission. This is not just a slogan, we have implemented it into the daily operations of the company.
How to achieve goals such as carbon neutrality? Specifically, Infineon has five strategic initiatives in practicing carbon neutrality: 1) Continuing and improving voluntary measures to reduce greenhouse gas emissions through exhaust gas purification, 2) Continuously improving energy efficiency and adopting the most advanced technologies in manufacturing Modern process technology, 3) mid-term transition to 100% green electricity with guaranteed provenance, 4) promotion of electric vehicles by expanding charging infrastructure in factories, 5) purchasing carbon emissions with high quality standards for emissions that cannot be completely avoided certificates, supporting projects with ecological and social benefits, etc.
This confidence in achieving carbon neutrality is actually due to Infineon’s good energy saving and emission reduction record. For example: In the production process, Infineon’s resource utilization efficiency is much higher than the global average level of the semiconductor industry; In terms of wafers, the power consumption per square centimeter of Infineon wafers is about 47% lower than the global average, the water consumption is about 29% lower than the global average, and the waste generated is about 47% lower than the global average. 56%.
“It is the good results achieved in the past and the advanced technology of Infineon that give us full confidence to achieve carbon neutrality. We believe that Infineon’s own innovative products and solutions can help achieve efficient energy Chain, so as to help the whole society to save energy and reduce emissions, to meet the challenges of climate change and energy scarcity.” Fan Yongxin said.
In the whole power industry chain, Infineon’s power semiconductors play a very important role. From power generation, transmission and distribution, energy storage to energy usage, Infineon is a leading semiconductor company capable of providing energy-efficient solutions for the entire industry chain.
In terms of energy generation and energy storage, Infineon has EasyPACK 1B/2B IGBT power modules and SSO8 power devices, which are mainly used in the fields of solar power generation, energy storage and fast charging. The EasyPACK 1B/2B modules offer higher efficiency, higher power density, smaller size and lower system cost, enabling flexible grid designs. At the same time, it can also improve the efficiency of converting solar energy into electricity, improve the efficiency of battery power consumption, and ensure grid stability.
In terms of energy use, Infineon’s EasyPACK 1B/2B, 1A/2A products and other IGBT power modules and discrete device products can reduce losses in the process of energy conversion and distribution, making energy efficient and widely used in industrial drives, data Centers, automobiles, intelligent buildings and many other fields.
At present, EasyPACK 1B/2B modules have been put into mass production in Infineon Wuxi factory and the production capacity is still expanding. The EasyPACK 1A/2A modules are also ready for mass production.
At the same time, Infineon is also introducing the HybridPACKTM double-sided cooling IGBT module for electric vehicles. This IGBT module can convert the DC power of the battery into the AC power of the drive motor, and can convert the AC power generated by braking into the DC power for battery charging. And the losses are very low, which helps to improve the cruising range of electric vehicles.
To implement the strategy of carbon neutrality, Infineon will work with all stakeholders to build a green circular chain in all aspects of the product life cycle, including raw material procurement, chip packaging and testing, chip packaging and transportation, and chip use. .
Wuxi factory is walking on the road of green factory
The first thing to note is that Infineon’s factories are divided into “front-end” factories and “back-end” factories. Among them, about 1/3 of them are front-end factories, the former factories do wafer manufacturing, and the rest are back-end factories. Road factories, these factories are located all over the world. Infineon’s Wuxi factory is the back-end factory.
It is worth mentioning that the Wuxi factory is Infineon’s largest manufacturing base in Greater China. The factory was established in 1995 and mainly produces discrete devices, smart card chips, and power semiconductors. At present, the number of employees exceeds 1,300, and Infineon is also building the Wuxi factory into one of Infineon’s largest IGBT manufacturing centers in the world.
Due to the special environmental requirements of constant temperature, constant humidity and dust-free semiconductor manufacturing, as well as the power requirements of key manufacturing processes, the carbon emissions of Infineon’s Wuxi factory mainly come from power consumption. According to the 2020 carbon footprint analysis based on the Greenhouse Gas Accounting System of the World Energy Institute, Infineon’s Wuxi plant accounts for 97% of carbon emissions from electricity consumption. A considerable part of power consumption is used in power equipment, air conditioning and so on.
On the way to a green factory, Infineon’s Wuxi factory mainly focuses on five key areas covering the product cycle, including: 1) Low-carbon manufacturing design. It is mainly reflected in the use of low-carbon materials and improving the efficiency of material use; continuous improvement of process design; development of intelligent manufacturing technology and improvement of equipment utilization; and the use of local production materials and equipment to reduce equipment and materials from suppliers to the Wuxi factory energy used for transportation. 2) Improve energy efficiency. Infineon Wuxi was established in 1995. In the process of development, it has continuously used the energy contract management model, and adopted advanced energy-saving technologies and products to carry out energy transformation of refrigeration systems, air compression systems, heating systems, and lighting systems. On the one hand, it can keep the factory running smoothly. On the other hand, the energy efficiency has also been greatly improved. In addition, Infineon Wuxi also uses neural networks for intelligent energy monitoring. 3) Reduce direct emissions. For example, clean and fluorine-free refrigeration materials are used, electric forklifts are used, and even the company’s shuttle buses also use new energy buses. 4) Resource recycling. For example, waste heat recycling is used in air treatment, water treatment and other systems; packaging materials recycling; production waste recycling, etc. 5) Use clean energy. In this regard, the Wuxi plant’s initiatives include the establishment of distributed rooftop and parking shed photovoltaic power generation systems, the adoption of green electricity, etc.
According to Fan Yongxin, the layout of the Wuxi factory is building-style, so there is not much available area, but photovoltaic power generation systems are installed in all available areas. So far, 28% of office electricity is driven by photovoltaics of. In the future, Infineon Wuxi will continue to work hard to develop new energy-saving methods. In fact, the Wuxi factory has already achieved a carbon peak as early as 2015, and carbon emissions in 2020 have been reduced by 27% compared with 2015. And the factory has realized 100% recycling of packaging materials, 100% use of waste heat recycling heating water treatment system, and 100% installation of photovoltaic power generation systems in the available areas. According to the 2021 China Classification Society quality assessment agency data, the green performance of Infineon’s Wuxi plant is in the top 5% of the semiconductor industry. Next, Infineon Wuxi’s goal is to follow the headquarters’ decision to reduce carbon emissions by 70% compared with 2019 in 2025 and achieve carbon neutrality in 2030.
Infineon Wuxi Factory
The Industrial Internet and Smart Factory are an important part of Infineon’s IoT strategy. At the same time, Infineon is a founding member of the “German Industry 4.0” executive and steering committee, and has also joined the Industrial Internet Consortium (IIC) and the German “Industry 4.0” platform, playing a role in the formulation of “Industry 4.0” related rules and standards. very crucial role. At the same time, Infineon is also developing the core devices and leading semiconductor solutions required by Industry 4.0.
Since 2013, Infineon Wuxi has realized the automation and intelligence of manufacturing through its self-developed Manufacturing Execution System (MES), which has significantly improved operational performance. The system can intelligently control five key production factors, including personnel, machines, materials, processes and methods, and environmental facilities. It uses paperless, data analysis and intelligent decision-making systems to realize factory automation and intelligence, thereby reducing costs and improving speed and quality. For example, Infineon Wuxi has shortened the production cycle by 50%; without additional investment in new equipment, the production efficiency has increased by 11%; the manufacturing factors and product process parameters have been 100% traceable; the degree of automation has reached 80% ; The system based on MES reduces the process and human error by 50%. On top of the MES system, Infineon Wuxi also has a “defect detection and management system”.
Looking ahead, Infineon presents the Wuxi Industry 4.0 blueprint. It mainly includes 4 aspects: 1) Integrated, digital and agile production and manufacturing system. This is mainly based on the MES system’s management and control of the “Human-Machine-Material Law Ring”. 2) Automatic anomaly detection and prediction of quality using big data analysis. 3) Production intelligence and automation. We hope that the lives of engineers and the lives of all office workers are also digitalized, that is, digital work and life that achieve efficient self-management. 4) It is hoped that optimally integrated material handling can be achieved.
When it comes to “Industry 4.0”, it is actually the Internet of Everything. How can we prevent or even reduce the risks after networking? Infineon Wuxi’s security solutions are crucial. The Wuxi factory is committed to ensuring the security of the interconnected world. The smart card chips it produces are used in a wide range of applications, including: payment, entertainment, government identification, personal identification, item identification, communication and many more.
In addition, Infineon is committed to the pursuit of zero defects. In 2020, the number of defects per billion devices produced by Infineon Wuxi will be less than 3, which can be said to have established a global semiconductor quality benchmark. How does the Wuxi factory achieve zero defects? This is due to the “Excellent Quality 3-2-1” management model created by the Wuxi factory. One core refers to excellent quality; two pillars refer to continuous stability and advanced innovation; three cornerstones refer to systems and tools, organizations and talents. “Even if there is any hesitation, insist on quality first”. Whether in clean rooms, laboratories or offices, Infineon’s “zero defect” philosophy is everywhere.
On the road to carbon neutrality, Infineon is at the forefront of the industry with practical actions. By building a green smart factory in Wuxi, independently developing industrial IoT technologies, driving operational excellence, and leading digital transformation, Infineon’s Wuxi factory is becoming an industry benchmark for back-end operations.
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