Our Commitment to
Creating the future, together
In 1987, the Bruntland Report defined sustainability as "development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs." Driving technology research that helps future generations thrive is central to our core purpose. As is a commitment to the exploration of greener material and process pathways that enable environmentally friendly and sustainable manufacturing solutions for future semiconductor devices. On this Sustainability Day, October 27, 2021, SRC President and CEO Dr. Todd Younkin issued a statement that confirms our commitment.
Two Main Initiatives Are Underway Today
Environment, Safety, and Health (ESH) Program
- Started in current form in 2015, with ESH budget growth of ~%18 YoY to $1.25M/yr. in 2022.
- Since 2015, our ESH program has funded 28 research tasks involving 13 universities, 45 faculty, and 70 students.
- Industry members include Texas Instruments, GlobalFoundries, IBM, Intel, Micron, and EMD Electronics.
- Micron and EMD Electronics are our newest ESH members, joining in 2021.
- ESH looks to explore pathways to greener materials and processes, which are critically important to enabling environmentally friendly and sustainable manufacturing solutions for future semiconductor hardware.
- Areas that need specific focus include:
- Assessment of potential environmental and human health risks associated with current and emerging materials and chemistries.
- Development of more environmentally preferable materials and chemistries that are more efficient, more effective, and safer.
- Treatment and abatement technologies for effluent, emission, and waste management.
- Improvement of processes and systems to reduce energy and material use and minimize waste generation.
ICT Energy Efficiency
- Following the publication of our 2030 Decadal Plan for Semiconductors illustrating Seismic Shift #5, which expanded on the challenges and opportunities for ICT hardware with improved energy efficiency, we have tagged ~37% of the current SRC research portfolio, or 179 tasks, as aligned to this grand challenge.
- Additional studies performed by the Decadal Plan Committee since our publication of Seismic Shift #5 have yielded new data points for both the computation and communication trends of ICT energy per year. Validation of the communication model is ongoing.
- Energy efficient hardware breakthroughs include, but are not limited to, 3D chips based on advances in 2.5 and 3D packaging and 3D monolithic integration, new memory and storage solutions, general purpose AI hardware, advances in communication hardware including silicon photonics, and quantum computing.
Select ESH Highlights from SRC Industry Members
- In 2022, TSMC successfully completed tool modifications and an alternative process verification that allowed them to reach their annual target of "95% reduction in NMP usage" set in their Sustainability Report. This reduces their carbon footprint by about 7,800 metric tons of carbon dioxide equivalent per year and shows their continued commitment to improving their green manufacturing capability. https://esg.tsmc.com/en/update/inclusiveWorkplace/caseStudy/31/index.html
- In 2021, chipmaker TSMC stated that they are pushing for net zero emissions by 2050, a major commitment by the world’s largest chip foundry. https://www.reuters.com/technology/chipmaker-tsmc-aims-net-zero-emissions-by-2050-2021-09-16/
- In its 2020-2021 sustainability report, Intel has outlined plans for establishing 100% renewable energy by 2030 as well as a net-positive water use plan that includes a goal of conserving 60 billion gallons of water. https://www.environmentalleader.com/2021/09/intel-water-sustainability-goals-important-in-large-europe-facility-project/
- In 2019, SK hynix became the 14th company in the world and the first company in South Korea to obtain the international Zero Waste to Landfill certification. http://www.koreaherald.com/view.php?ud=20190219000778