Air Products, through its subsidiary Air Products San Fu Co Ltd in Taiwan, has signed a long-term contract with Rexchip Semiconductor Corporation for the supply of nitrogen and bulk gases.

The gases will be supplied to Rexchip’s 2 new 12-inch fabrication facilities, which are under construction in Central Taiwan Science Park (CTSP) in Houli, Taichung. Under the contract, Air Products will build, own and operate two new nitrogen air separation plants in the science park.

Rexchip is a new joint venture company between Powerchip Semiconductor Corporation and Elpida Memory Inc. to operate DRAM fabrication facilities in Central Taiwan Science Park with a total planned capacity of 240,000 12” wafers per month, making the Rexchip Houli site the largest concentration of 12” DRAM fabrication facilities in the world.

The CTSP, which includes Taichung, Houli and Huwei park stations, is one of 2 new government-sponsored science parks in Taiwan to attract investments and the development of high-tech industries to the central Taiwan district.

David Price, regional vice president and general manager of Asia Electronics, Air Products, commented, “This contract reinforces the partnership we have forged with Powerchip over the years. It also demonstrates our commitment to focus on what our customers value the most. Our new investment also enables us to establish a strong position in the CTSP, which is set to be another cluster of high tech industries.”

One of the new nitrogen plants in the CTSP will be the seventh of its kind in Asia, which is based on Air Products’ high efficiency design that delivers reliable and cost-effective nitrogen to customers in the electronics sector, and other industries around the world.

The memory segment of the semiconductor industry is forecast to grow by up to 20% annually over the next 5 years. The strong growth in demand of memory chips is being driven by new applications in mobile communications, automobiles, game systems, portable multimedia players and personal computer operating systems.