Atomic Layer Deposition (ALD) equipment is penetrating all More than Moore applications

Yole Développement (Yole) announces a 12% CAGR to reach US$680 million in 2026.

Extracted from: Atomic Layer Deposition Equipment for More than Moore report, Yole Développement, 2021


  • Market trends:
    The ALD equipment market dedicated to MtM applications, apart from CIS, is really taking off now for commercial device manufacturing.
    A 30% CAGR 2020-2026 is expected for ALD equipment used in the production of photonics devices.
    Over the same period, power and RF devices will have 12% and 15% CAGRs, respectively.
    MEMS, sensors and CIS CAGRs will be less than 10% over this period.
  • Technology trends:
    ALD technology is ideal when high-quality nm-thick films have to be conformally deposited over complex structures.
    CIS and a small percentage of Si-based low-power devices follow manufacturing processes similar to logic and memory with production on similar 300 mm platforms.
    On the other hand, most MtM devices are manufactured with 200 mm platforms with ALD used to improve device performance.
  • Ecosystem:
    The ALD process is constantly being refined by all supply chain actors working in close collaboration.
    For equipment makers, entry to the ALD business can be achieved in two ways: by acquiring smaller start-ups or developing existing CVD equipment.
    Leading equipment manufacturers have long been present in the ALD business for logic and memory HVM. For example: Applied Materials, LAM Research, ASM International, TEL, and Kokusai Electric...
    Other smaller players, such as ALD specialized equipment vendors ( Picosun and Beneq) or vacuum systems vendors (Optorun, Veeco, Plasma-Therm, Oxford Instruments), are diversifying their lineup to address growing More than Moore application markets.

“The worldwide fab capacity expansion is accelerating the industrial adoption of ALD equipment,” asserts Taguhi Yeghoyan, Ph.D., Technology & Market Analyst, Semiconductor Manufacturing at Yole Développement (Yole).
The ALD equipment market dedicated to MtM device manufacturing totaled US$345 million in 2020 and was dominated by CIS (47%). In the coming years, the ALD equipment market is expected to increase with a 12% CAGR between 2020 and 2026, reaching $680M in 2026.

This market’s promising outlook is well detailed in the first Yole report fully dedicated to ALD, published today: Atomic Layer Deposition Equipment for More than Moore report. This report is one of the impressive collection of semiconductor manufacturing reports published by the market research & strategy consulting company, Yole.
The ALD analysis offers a comprehensive description of the status of industrial adoption for MtM device production. It highlights process requirements and trends. The semiconductor manufacturing team also provides a relevant ALD equipment benchmark, including technology, reactor architecture, and average selling price. Furthermore, the supply chain and related ecosystem are analyzed.
This technology & market study includes market size analysis with a breakdown by market share, wafer size, and device application, as well as an ALD equipment market forecast with a breakdown by device application.

According to Yole’s analysts, two main reasons can be given for the high growth of the ALD equipment market.
Firstly, manufacturing sites are gearing up for the production of MtM devices that are gaining importance across all the megatrends: for example, compound semiconductor-based power devices, in particular GaN and SiC, as well as photonic devices, including miniLED and microLED. Their manufacturing is just rocketing for automotive and consumer applications, and ALD equipment sales are expected to increase with impressive CAGRs of 12% for power and 30% CAGR for photonics. The growth is further strengthened by the high wafer production volume of CIS devices, silicon power electronics, and advanced packaging - mainly Wafer Level Encapsulation - used across all MtM applications.
Secondly, the global semiconductor market is favorable. Chip shortages across all markets and MtM devices have pushed manufacturers to announce fab capacity expansion worldwide.
“This is an excellent opportunity to deploy new materials and processes that improve device performance,” argues Taguhi Yeghoyan from Yole. And she adds: “The ALD ecosystem and supply chain actors, traditionally tightly interrelated, now collaborate even more to accelerate ALD adoption. These include ALD process developers such as academic and R&D institutes, precursor suppliers (off-shelf and customized), equipment subpart providers, as well as inspection and metrology system providers.”

Moreover, fab expansions concern not only the leading manufacturing players but also smaller production sites, giving emerging ALD equipment vendors a growth opportunity.
The 2020 ALD equipment market is led by 300mm platforms. At Yole, analysts identified the following leading ALD players: ASM International, with 30% market share, and TEL, with 18% market share, as well as NAURA. All these players are offering 300mm platforms with high average selling price as well as high throughput.
These players are followed by Picosun, specialized in 200 mm platforms, which has 10% of ALD market share globally. The company is, however, closely followed by Optorun, Beneq, Plasma-Therm, Oxford Instruments, and Veeco, among others.
Moreover, equipment vendors previously active only in ALD research are now developing their machines for volume production in response to the chip and equipment shortages. All in all, the ongoing global semiconductor market upside gives an optimistic prospect for MtM ALD equipment vendors’ revenue. However, the ALD market is competitive, and market shares can change significantly in the coming years.

Throughout the year, Yole Développement publishes an impressive collection of semiconductor manufacturing-dedicated reports. Make sure to be aware of the latest news coming from the industry and get an overview of our activities on i-Micronews.

ALD equipment market
MtM : More than Moore
CIS : CMOS Image Sensor
CAGR: Compound Annual Growth Rate
RF: Radio Frequency