ASML is one of the world’s leading manufacturers of chip-making equipment. Headquartered in Veldhoven, the Netherlands, ASML employs more than 21,000 people.
The semiconductor industry - a $298-billion global sector1 - is at the heart of the electronics supply chain. Its chemicals, water and energy use have a significant and immediate impact on the environment.
Semiconductors - or computer chips, as they are commonly known - are made of silicon, one of the most common elements in the world. The industry’s reliance on highly-skilled labor is a strong incentive to offer favorable employment conditions.
ASML is uniquely positioned in the semiconductor industry: we manufacture chip-making machines, not chips. In the semiconductor industry, most usage of chemicals, water and energy relates to the mass production of chips by our customers. A limited amount of chemicals and water is used during testing stages. Our water and energy consumption is significantly lower than that of mass-chip producers.
The technical performance of our machines, however, determines the use of resources by our customers and we address this in our product roadmap.
Furthermore, our sector allows for the continuous introduction of new and ever-improving electronic products, using less energy per electronic function. In addition, by producing more powerful chips, our industry enables the introduction of increasingly sophisticated equipment in health care, such as new-generation MRI scanners, and the development of the ‘smart grid’, a sophisticated IT-driven electricity-distribution model, which helps households and companies use electricity more efficiently. In this way, our industry helps improve the quality of life for people around the world.
1Source: Gartner 2012