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What you need to know for 01/24/2017

GlobalFoundries chooses Fab 1 leader to also run Fab 8

GlobalFoundries chooses Fab 1 leader to also run Fab 8

GlobalFoundries has appointed the executive who now oversees its two Fab 1 computer chip plants in D

GlobalFoundries has appointed the executive who now oversees its two Fab 1 computer chip plants in Dresden to also oversee operations at its $7 billion Fab 8 complex.

Rutger Wijburg, senior vice president, will continue to oversee Fab 1 and be based in Germany and split his time between the two locations, said GlobalFoundries spokesman Travis Bullard.

Fab 8 General Manager Eric Choh, who has reported to a GlobalFoundries executive based in Singapore, will now report to Wijburg, Bullard said. “This does not change much for day-to-day operations of Fab 8,” he said.

An industry publication, Tom’s Hardware, said Wijburg will bring the know-how generated in Dresden — where GlobalFoundries has invested more than $2.5 billion in recent expansions — to Fab 8, where commercial computer chip production is just starting. The two plants are considered the company’s most advanced, Bullard acknowledged.

Wijburg joined GlobalFoundries in 2011 from Netherlands-based NXP Semiconductors, where he was responsible for that company’s seven wafer fabrication facilities.

GlobalFoundries, now the world’s second largest chip foundry company, has six production facilities in Singapore, as well as the advanced-technology plants in Dresden and Malta.

GlobalFoundries makes computer chips under contract for technology companies — like smartphone makers — that need computer chips but either don’t have their own factories or need more chips than they can make themselves. Because of the cost of building new chip fabrication facilities, it’s a growing part of the industry.

Fab 8, located in the Luther Forest Technology Campus, has a production capacity of 60,000 of the 300 mm wafers per month, with chips being produced at a 28-nanometer scale. Fab 8 researchers are developing 20-nm and 14-nm chips.

Fab 8 employs 1,900 people and has continued to hire as commercial production begins.

“It’s up and running, and we’ve hit all major development, operations and customer milestones,” Bullard said.

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