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Back To Basics As Older Chip Tools Now In Short Supply

Global semiconductor makers are having to rely on older style chipmaking machinery which is in short supply because of soaring demand for their products.

In what chipmakers have described as a chain reaction the production of chipmaking machines themselves has been impacted and they are also in short supply.

Polar Semiconductor makes chips for US automakers and is booked beyond capacity. But expanding production lines to help solve a chip shortage that is shutting down car factories around the world is not feasible – in part due to the scarcity of older-style chipmaking machinery.

Resellers of chipmaking gear say they cannot find used equipment, leading some buyers to stalk old factories in the US, Japan and Europe, waiting for them to close in the hope of snapping up the gear inside.

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