World cleanroom space to increase by 6 million sq ft this year

Asia will see greatest growth but other countries such as Russia are seeing good growth too

By 2014 there will be 131 million ft2 of cleanroom space in use across the world. This will be an increase of 5% over 2013. This is the latest forecast in Cleanrooms World Markets published by the McIlvaine Company.

This is net space in operation and reflects the retirements of older plants. The semiconductor industry generally builds new plants rather than renovating existing ones. This is due to contamination concerns.

Asia has surpassed the other regions due to its dominance in flat panel displays, hard disk drives, storage, and photovoltaics. China, Taiwan and South Korea are leading investors in semiconductor chip plants.

The semiconductor industry is the largest user of cleanrooms worldwide. The amount of cleanroom space is now at near record highs. Semiconductor sales for 2012 reached US$291.6bn, the industry’s third-highest yearly total ever, but a decrease of 2.7% from the record total of $299.5bn set in 2011.

Some segments are in decline but are offset by growth in others; facing competition from tablets, smart phones, solid state drives (SSD), and global hard disk drives (HDD). Market revenue in 2013 will decline more than 10% this year. Revenue is set to drop to $32bn in 2013.

The pharmaceutical industry continues to show steady growth. Much of the new growth is taking place outside the US and Europe. The pharmaceutical industry in Russia has been witnessing a double-digit growth rate recently. According to the new regulations that will be enforced in Russia from 2014, it will be imperative for the pharmaceutical companies to pursue GMP-compliant production procedures.

Over the past decade the solar industry has had the highest percentage growth. Photovoltaic module shipments in 2013 are forecast to exceed 34,000 MW, up 10% over 2012.

Cleanroom space in use (million ft2)
World Region20132014
Africa11
CIS22
East Asia5760
Eastern Europe12
Middle East33
NAFTA3233
South & Central America33
West Asia34
Western Europe2323
Total125 131

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