TOKYO Although a Magnitude 7 earthquake that attacked Kyushu island in the southern part of Japan Sunday killed one and injured more than 500, semiconductor fabs were back in operation on Tuesday (March 22).
The quake, which occurred in the middle of a long weekend in Japan, struck roughly 50 kilometers away from fabs operated by Rohm Co. Ltd., NEC Electronics, Toshiba, and Sumitomo Mitsubishi Silicon Corp. Sony's Nagasaki plant and Toshiba's Oita plant were 100 kilometers away.
"Production equipment automatically stopped. But most lines resumed operation within the day and the rest did next day," said a spokesman of NEC Electronics. "There were no damage and no effect of the earthquake on production."
NEC has a front-end fab in Kita Kyushu city about 60 kilometers from the quake's center and an assembly fab 20 kilometers away.
Rohm's fab was located in an area where the jolt was reportedly 6 on the seismic intensity scale of the Japan Metrological Agency (JMA). Though JMA said a level 6 jolt could cause building damage, a Rohm spokesman said that there was no damage to buildings, employees and equipment. Operation resumed within a day.
Though the JMA warns of strong aftershocks in the affected area, spokesmen for the companies have thus far reported no damage to their production facilities.