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Electronics Sector Skills Council of India

An ultimate guide to the semiconductor design and active components industry

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Semiconductor design and active components industry

Given India’s strategic importance, it must emerge as the world’s next big semiconductor chip designer and manufacturer. Given India’s knowledge-based economy and large market base, I personally support an autonomous semiconductor sector free of governmental and bureaucratic constraints.

According to the Indian Electronics & Semiconductor Association, the Indian semiconductor sector will be valued $ 33 billion by 2025, with a 10% annual growth rate.

India is constructing an electronics system design manufacturing industry in a systematic manner. Currently, India designs approximately 3000 chips per year, with over 30,000 engineers focusing on various elements of chip design and verification.

Semiconductor chip design and manufacturing in India should benefit greatly from investment proposals thanks to government of India initiatives to boost the economy, such as the Make in India programme, 100 percent foreign direct investment (FDI), and support of subsidies and incentives, which are strategically important for job creation and skill development.

Small and medium-sized businesses must also be targeted for chip manufacture, as is the case in China, Taiwan, and Thailand. This will undoubtedly make India self-sufficient and self-reliant in semiconductor chip manufacture, filling a gap in the country’s electronics manufacturing capacity.

India has inked an MoU with the Singapore Semiconductor Industry Association to expand trade and technological cooperation in the electronics and semiconductor industries, which is positive. Companies are now realising the potential of India’s electronics industry and are significantly investing in production.

Panasonic Corp., for example, is building a new facility in Haryana that will produce refrigerators and house an appliance R&D centre for the Indian market. India is an excellent place for international R&D. Chandigarh’s Semiconductor Complex is a key fabrication plant. From the standpoint of defence R&D, the Gallium Arsenide (GaAs) production facility in Hyderabad is critical. Bangalore is quickly establishing itself as a centre for cutting-edge semiconductor start-ups.

Furthermore, the Indian government is establishing world-class infrastructure in electronics manufacturing clusters around the country.

However, because the majority of electronic components are imported, it is critical to address the import problems. Consumer demand for electronics in India is expanding as a result of the country’s growing digitization, necessitating the development of indigenous electronic manufacturing capabilities. However, from a strategic standpoint, the bulk of consumer demand cannot be fulfilled only through imports. As a result, India’s case for a self-sufficient indigenous chip manufacturing industry is compelling.

Semiconductor design and active components industry outlook

However, gaining a complete monopoly on the semiconductor value chain is a tall and difficult task. Each significant country in the value chain has many “choke spots,” which governments are attempting to exploit for their own profit through export rules and outright prohibitions. India, which has a monopoly on chip design, is now attempting to expand its strategic autonomy within the semiconductor value chain. Setting up fabless manufacturing facilities is one of the first steps in this direction. Fabless units are extremely expensive to put up; one unit’s initial setup expenses are expected to be at least $1 billion, and results would take roughly 4-5 years to produce. To begin production, it would take around two years. Furthermore, semiconductor R&D and production costs continue to rise; the most recent demand is for 5 nanometre (nm) chips, which cost roughly $540 million. The majority of manufacturers produce 14nm chips and are transitioning to 10nm with the goal of reaching 5nm chip production in the near future. Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. Ltd and Apple, for example, are already producing 5nm chips, indicating Moore’s Law is quickly becoming obsolete.

India’s engineers, on the other hand, produce some of the world’s most cutting-edge semiconductor designs for businesses such as Qualcomm, Intel, Nvidia, ARM, AMD, Mediatek, and others. According to IESA’s Satyen Gupta, R&D in semiconductor design, electronics, and embedded software is worth over $23 billion and employs nearly 6 lakh people.

What are active components?

A device with an analogue electrical filter that can amplify a signal or provide a power gain is known as an active component. Electron tubes and semiconductors or solid-state devices are the two types of active components. An oscillator, transistor, or integrated circuit are examples of active components.

A device’s active component functions as an alternating-current circuit, boosting active power, voltage, or current. Because it is powered by a distinct source of electricity from the electrical signal, an active component can achieve this.

Semiconductors, the most common of which is a transistor, make up the bulk of electronic devices. A basic transistor is commonly used in an amplifier, which boosts the active current I/O signal with the help of a direct current (DC) power source.

By allowing voltage to control the current or allowing another current to influence the current, an active device can control electron flow. Current-controlled devices, such as bipolar junction transistors, allow one current to regulate another, but voltage-controlled devices, such as vacuum tubes, control their own signal.

All active components require an energy source, which is usually provided via a DC circuit. Furthermore, an active device, such as a transistor, triode vacuum tube, or tunnel diode, may generally inject power into a circuit.

The term “passive component” refers to a component that is not active. It drains energy and has no ability to increase power. Capacitors, resistors, and inductors are examples of basic passive components.

Where India stands in terms of semiconductor and components industry

India needs to use a two-pronged approach to close the competitive advantage gap with other countries and solidify its position as a market leader in one area where it currently excels. This includes increasing chip design capabilities and conducting more research. To encourage IPR in chip design, MeitY and Cadence Design Systems have launched the Fabless Chip Design Incubator Programme (FabCI). A less capital-intensive approach would be to tap into India’s existing talent pool – the country has 4,000 engineering colleges with nearly 1.2 million graduates each year – and focus on developing semiconductor design capabilities by collaborating with industry and government.

The government is concentrating its efforts in the future on developing globally competent national champions in the component ecosystem. To foster the progress of indigenous technology, joint ventures between global and domestic enterprises should be promoted.

With substantial investments from global and domestic heavyweights like Foxconn, Wistron, Samsung, Lava, Micromax, and others, the future of the Indian electronic component ecosystem is bright. These investments, aided by widespread legislative reforms and fiscal gains, will pave the path for self-reliance across the whole electronics value chain in the coming years. A well-developed component manufacturing sector will lay the groundwork for the development of a homegrown fab ecosystem, allowing India to become a global center for electronic manufacturing.

If you wish to pursue your career in the semiconductor designs and active components industry you must begin with your career planning today. Start your career planning with MyCareerGurukul where we have expert counselors and mentors to help you plan your career out of the numerous opportunities which stand in front of you. 

MyCareerGurukul is a unique platform boosting the enthusiasm for discovering the correct career path for students at the right time with perfect coaching and mentoring to shape their career successfully. It is based in Vasai West, Mumbai North Region.

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