Bosch plans to open a semiconductor production plant in Dresden, Germany, where it will employ more than 700 staff members. The new facility will be a 1-billion euro investment toward manufacturing 300-millimeter chips slated for use in burgeoning markets like industrial automation, smart homes and cities, industrial internet and connectivity, and self-driving cars.
The facility is scheduled for completion by 2019, with production expected to start in 2021 following a start-up phase. The investment will be funded by Bosch and by government and EU subsidies as they look to increase the region’s footprint in developing electronics and technology for the Internet of Things and automation.
“The new manufacturing facility for semiconductors is the largest single investment in the more than 130-year history of Bosch. Semiconductors are the core components of all electronic systems. Their application fields are becoming ever greater due to the increasing networking and automation,” says Bosch chairman Volkmar Denner.
Bosch is currently a large manufacturer of chips such as microelectromechanical systems (MEMS) sensors and application-specific integrated circuits (ASIC). It was estimated in 2016 that most cars contain an average of nine Bosch chips, and three out of four cell phones contain Bosch chips.
While Bosch’s other factory in Reutlingen produces ASICs and MEMS using 150- and 200-milimeter technology, it aims to increase its throughput by producing chips using of 300-milimeter technology. And by collaborating with universities and other microelectronics companies in the region, it aims to remain competitive in the automotive market by producing circuits that will integrate with new automated technologies.