WF6 and NF3 Demand Expected To Outstrip Supply By 2025 Driven By 3D NAND Memory Evolution

2021 Recovery For Specialty Gases Stronger Than First Anticipated

San Diego, CA, August 10, 2021:  TECHCET—the electronic materials advisory firm providing business and technology information— announced 3D NAND memory evolution is driving increased use of WF6, NF3, and heavy noble gases (Kr and Xe), which may lead to a supply shortage. WF6 demand growth, with a CAGR of 14.2%, is expected to outstrip supply by 2024/2025. The high growth is due to increased use of tungsten in 3DNAND and fab expansions. NF3 demand growth, with a CAGR of 15.8%, is also expected to outpace supply by 2025. It is heavily used in chamber clean and etch processes across the semiconductor and FDP industry. NF3’s demand growth is driven by 3DNAND and FDP post Covid recovery.

“Due to vertical scaling of 3DNAND, the demand for tungsten deposition (WF6) and chamber clean gases (NF3) for dielectric PECVD and tungsten ALD continues upwards and may cause a supply shortage in 2024 unless suppliers increase capacity,” said TECHCET’s Sr. Analyst Dr. Jonas Sundqvist. “As of now, no suppliers have specifically announced capacity increase.” Hopefully, in the future, suppliers will announce capacity increases for WF6 and NF3 to combat this shortage.

There is significant growth expected in Asia and in the US for gas companies. The US has announced numerous leading-edge fab expansions that will pull on the supply of specialty and rare gases (EUV). Fab Investments in Taiwan, Korea and China drive global demand adding a demand from memory fabs. Rare Air Gases such as Ne, Kr and Xe, rely on investment in Air Separation Units (ASUs) with capability to also extract those rare gases and unless the demand is high enough for all types it may cause imbalances in supply/demand of abundant Air Gases such as N2, O2 and Ar and rare gases. Due to limited investments in EU fab infrastructure, EU Fabs will more and more have to rely on gas imported from overseas.

As indicated in TECHCET’s New Critical Materials Report™ on Electronic Gases 2021, the recovery for specialty gases is stronger than first anticipated and this will continue into 2022 due to ongoing chip fab expansions. Specialty gas has a 2020-2025 CAGR of 7.6%, while bulk gas has a CAGR of 4.2% from 2020-2025.

For more information on Electronic Gases Including Ne & Xe Critical Materials Report™: https://techcet.com/product/gases/ 

ABOUT TECHCET:  TECHCET CA LLC is an advisory services firm focused on process materials supply-chains, electronic materials business, and materials market analysis for the semiconductor, display, solar/PV, and LED industries. Since 2000, the company has been responsible for producing the Critical Material Reports™, covering silicon wafers, semiconductor gases, wet chemicals, CMP consumables, Photoresists, and ALD/CVD Precursors. The Critical Materials Council (CMC) of semiconductor fabricators is a business service offered by TECHCET, and includes materials supplier Associate Members. For additional information about reports, market briefings, CMC membership, or custom consulting please contact [email protected], +1-480-332-8336, or go to www.techcet.com or www.cmcfabs.org.