Japanese chemical company Showa Denko K.K (SDK) has expanded its capacity to produce high-purity hydrogen bromide (HBr), starting operation of its expanded HBr plant this month.

High-purity HBr is a specialty gas mainly used for fine-etching of polysilicon in the manufacturing processes of semiconductors including DRAms and NAND flash memories. The demand for high-purity HBr has been increasing due to ongoing expansion of the market for semiconductors caused by acceleration in digitalisation, such as the progress in the fields of IoT, big data analysis and automatic driving.

A press release explained, “SDK had a plant to synthesize and purify HBr which had capacity to produce 600 tonnes a year. However, the plant had been maintaining high operating rate. Therefore, anticipating further increase in the demand for high-purity HBr, SDK expanded the capacity to 900 tonnes a year, 1.5 times as much as the previous level.”