Caixin
Dec 24, 2022 10:30 AM
WEEKEND LONG READ

Weekend Long Read: How the Key to Cutting-Edge Chips Came Out of the Netherlands, and Not China

A rendering depicts an ASML-made EUV lithography system. Photo: ASML
A rendering depicts an ASML-made EUV lithography system. Photo: ASML

Editor’s note: The lithography machine stands at the center of the global chipmaking ecosystem. These machines can produce a beam of light so narrow that it can etch features onto a piece of silicon with precision down to the nanometer. The current generation of these machine will allow foundries to continue to produce microchips with smaller and smaller features — creating faster and faster chips — for years to come. The company that makes the most cutting-edge lithography machines is ASML Holding NV, based in the Netherlands. So just how did this Dutch company come to hold such a crucial position in the global semiconductor industry? IT industry specialist Yu Shaoqing explains.

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