GE signs contract to supply Globalfoundries with ultrapure water system

GE will design, supply and install an advanced ultrapure water system for the $4.6 billion computer chip factory called Fab 8, which is due for completion in late 2012. GE’s ultrapure water system will filter millions of gallons of water per day to be used in the semiconductor manufacturing process. It will significantly reduce operating costs and increase efficiency. 

Ultrapure water systems are often considered the lifeblood of a semiconductor wafer fabrication facility, or ‘fab’. During the production cycle, a wafer comes into contact with ultrapure water more than 35 times and any disruption of service or ‘out-of-spec’ water can compromise the wafers and even result in loss of product. In order to consistently manufacture superior semiconductor wafers, Globalfoundries requires the reliable production of ultrapure water 24 hours per day, 365 days per year. 

GE’s ultrapure water system consists of a series of water treatment technologies, pumps, storage tanks, ultraviolet sterilizers, ozone generators, ion exchange, an ultrafiltration system and a gas transfer membrane system, as well as commissioning and operations and maintenance. 

Norm Armour, vice president and general manager of Fab 8, Globalfoundries, said: “Reliable, long-term production of ultrapure water will play a vital role in the successful operations of our new Fab 8 facility. We chose GE based on its extensive experience and ability to provide ongoing reliable technical and field support.”