• “Chips made in Europe” – where Finland can increase Europe’s competetive advantage

    business partner

    The Finnish semiconductor ecosystem has all the ingredients to become an even more significant player in the rising European semiconductor industry.

    Chips and other semiconductor components are considered indispensable in all important fields of the future – they are key enablers for the green and digital transformation which means the market demand is also heavily increasing. The semiconductor industry has become strategic for the future of nations, and a domain for heated global competition.

    The EU is joining forces between multiple Member States to support companies‘ investments under the EU Chips Act, which aiming to strengthen the EU’s technological sovereignty. The goal is for Europe to double its global market share for semiconductors to 20 percent by 2030. A remarkable 43 billion euros are to be made available from the EU budget and private sector funds.

    Finland is one of the active countries in the EU Chips act and developing it’s semiconductor industry. The business sector of electronics and photonics currently employs around 5,000 people in Finland and is worth just under two billion euros. Finland already has a well-developed semiconductor industry that attracts global leading companies to tap into the high-level knowhow in the country. How can a small country like Finland compete with the big global players?

    Finland has leading expertise across all areas regarding semiconductors
    ”There is no digital without chips, and neither are there chips without electronics and photonics. And since the world is mainly analogic, there is also a constantly growing need for chips that join the digital and analogue worlds together: AD/DA converters, sensors, imaging chips, photon sources and detectors, lasers, RF and quantum chips, and thousands of other chips that are not processors or

    memories. Finland has leading expertise across all these areas. Furthermore, Finland’s strengths aren’t limited to sensors, microelectromechanical systems (MEMS) and photonic and mobile communication components but also cover the design of such devices and systems. These factors, combined with

    speciality wafer-producing capability and a strong ALD sector, make Finland a country that has the non- digital part of everything digital at its fingertips” describes Kari Leino, Senior Advisor at Business Finland.

    A key for Finland’s success has been specialization. Particularly, expertise required in the telecommunications industry – from RF chip and antenna design continues to SOC (system-on-chip) technology and circuit design. Consequently, Finland is still one of the EU’s most prominent experts in the design of system circuits for mobile phone networks. The design expertise has also attracted many leading international companies establish design sites in Finland.

    Another example of leading expertise is in MEMS, where the Finnish research and development in MEMS (Micro Electro-mechanical systems) technologies has been a success story. Manufacturing nanoscale electromechanical systems with MEMS technology has revolutionized sensorics, measurement and other applications in eg automobiles, biomedical applications and electronics. This part of the Finnish microelectronics ecosystem covers the value chain from wafer fabrication to sensors and systems. Finnish Vaisala is one of the leading companies in this field.

    „Chips from Finland“ initiative building a European ecosystem of semiconductor and quantum industry
    High-level of research and development is a key pilar for Finland’s semiconductor industry. Several universities in Finland conduct cutting-edge research in microelectronics and photonics. When it comes to application-specific integrated circuits, for example, Aalto University, the University of Oulu and the University of Tampere are leading the way. VTT, the technical Research Centre of Finland, is a powerhouse in microelectronics research and development with a wide range of expertise that includes Micro Electro-Mechanical Systems (MEMS), photonic, quantum and other specialty components.

    There is ambition to leverage the high-level research and knowhow. Several partners from research, industry and municipalities are preparing a national microchip program, called the “Chips from Finland” initiative. It is intended to build a European ecosystem of semiconductor and quantum industry in Finland.

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