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Another Fire At Japanese Chip Plant Set To Wreak Havoc

Another fire at a Japanese component plant is set to create problems for CE, automotive and audio Companies, this is the third major fire at a Japanese chip factory in 18 months.

Japan’s Renesas Electronics said at the weekend that they have halted production at one of its main plants in Hitachinaka, northeast of Tokyo, after a fire damaged equipment used to make advanced semiconductor wafers with a diameter of 300 millimetres.

If the plant remains shut down for a long period of time, supplies of automotive and chips for CE and AV Pro goods could face new supply problems.

Renesas began assessing the damage Saturday morning. The company has set up an emergency committee to address the issue.

In February 2020 an explosive fire at the Apollo Masters vinyl lacquer plant caused major disruptions to the audio industry.

In October 2020 the AKG audio-semiconductor factory burnt for three days, this caused problems for several audio brands.

Audio processors made at that particular facility are made nowhere else, they included AKM’s world-renowned DACs and ADCs used in pro-audio and many up-scale consumer audio components.

The factory said that production would be down for at least six months as AKM rebuilds.

Impact on the audio-chip supply chain was immediate as companies using AKM parts began panic buying, increasing orders in an effort not to be caught short in the near future, among those to have secured processors elsewhere was Denon and Marantz.