X-FAB Silicon Foundries SE claims it is the first semiconductor foundry to receive certification for automotive manufacturing under the new standard, the IATF-16949 International Automotive Quality Management System (QMS).
Previously, the ISO TS 16949 has been the industry standard for quality management of automotive ICs, however, after its release in 2016, the IATF 16949 has superseded it and is implemented as a supplement to the ISO 9001 standard. The new standard enhances the requirements for business procedures, cleanliness, ethics, training, supplier and customer communications as well as record keeping.
X-FAB has shipped more than 17 billion automotive devices to date with the company estimating there are, on average, about 10 ICs produced by the foundry in every newly manufactured vehicle worldwide. As vehicle connectivity, vehicle safety and advancements in self-driving cars continue to grow, X-FAB believes the semiconductor content in an average automobile will increase rapidly, even doubling over the amount of semiconductors in vehicles today.
Five of X-FAB’s six manufacturing sites are now IATF-16949 certified, including its Erfrt, Dresden and Itzehoe fabs in Germany, the Kuching fab in Malaysia and the Lubbock, Texas, facility. The last fab in Corbeil Essonnes, France, is expected to be qualified in the second quarter of this year.
The quality certification is something that will be beneficial to not just X-FAB’s automotive IC manufacturing but also to its overall semiconductor foundry manufacturing operations, including its industrial, consumer and medical devices, the company says.