TSMC collaborates with suppliers to use waste from fertilizer manufacturing as raw material for HF production.
HF is a critical chemical for the semiconductor manufacturing process. TSMC uses HF from phosphate fertilizer manufacturing waste to approach environmental sustainability.

TSMC Successfully Collaborates with Suppliers to Create Eco-friendly Hydrofluoric Acid, Deepening Environmental Sustainability

Phosphate fertilizer waste is used instead of fluorspar production to improve quality and reduce carbon emissions
Jacky Feng
Yi-sung Chiu
Hui-Ting Tsai

In response to the continuous growth in demand for raw materials as production capacity expands, TSMC stays committed to practicing green innovation. In order to ensure stable and sustainable supply of , a key chemical in the semiconductor manufacturing process, TSMC collaborates with HF suppliers to replace fluorspar with phosphate fertilizer waste to successfully produce HF without affecting the quality of the original process. , TSMC Fab 12A and Fab 15A have applied this eco-friendly HF, reducing the amount of used and reducing carbon dioxide emission by 317 tons. are now also undergoing trial production. TSMC expects to reduce carbon dioxide emission by more than 20,000 tons after introducing this eco-friendly HF to all TSMC 12-inch fabs, equivalent to the carbon dioxide adsorption capacity of Taipei Daan Forest Parks in one year, creating a circular economy and environmental sustainability.

Turning Phosphate Fertilizer Waste into a Quality Carbon Reduction Weapon

HF is a key chemical in the wet etching process during semiconductor manufacturing. Fluorspar is typical used as the raw material for this acid. However, because it is not easy to obtain and the refining process is complicated, it is difficult to reduce carbon emissions in the production process. TSMC regards the promotion of a green and low-carbon supply chain as an important part of . In order to promote sustainable development, the Company has collaborated with suppliers since 2021 to evaluate the viability of alternative raw materials for HF. Hydrofluoric acid is now produced with the waste material derived from the phosphate fertilizer production process. In order to make the quality conform to the semiconductor process standard, TSMC not only guides suppliers to provide certificates of quality assurance (CoA) in advance at the incoming material stage, but also assists them in developing independent production lines for testing. After repeated adjustments, the process is optimized to ensure subsequent production quality is in good condition.

TSMC Collaborates with Suppliers to Produce Hydrofluoric Acid from Phosphate Fertilizer Waste

TSMC Collaborates with Suppliers to Produce Hydrofluoric Acid from Phosphate Fertilizer Waste

TSMC teams up with suppliers to continuously improve the quality of raw materials and reduce carbon emissions. We hope that the concept of carbon reduction can become part of our DNA to promote green innovation and drive environmental sustainability.

- M.D. Chen, Director of Corporate Analytical Laboratories at TSMC

TSMC deepens its green benefits and actively guides suppliers to expand the use of phosphate fertilizer waste to produce hydrofluoric acid. It is expected that after the completion of the second independent production line at the end of 2024, the consumption of fluorspar will be further reduced, with a total carbon reduction of more than 40,000 metric tons. In addition to improving the quality of raw materials, TSMC also continues to seek opportunities for improvement in sustainable use. The QR division continues to cooperate with various fabs to carry out internal recycling of electronic-grade sulfuric acid and electronic-grade isopropanol, and hydrofluoric acid. They also evaluate the recycling of fluorine gas from waste materials, and guide suppliers to develop related technologies to move towards the goal of sustainable resource regeneration.