Silicon epitaxy up 92% in 2006

The Silicon Epitaxy sector grew 92% in 2006, significantly greater than the 24% growth for the entire semiconductor equipment market, according to The Information Network. The Silicon Epitaxy sector increased 92%, with Applied Materials leading the sector with a 157% growth over 2005. The Plasma Etching sector increased nearly 50%, twice the average for semiconductor equipment. Dielectric Etch remained the largest subsector, but Polysilicon Etch grew the greatest; nearly 62%. Lam Research increased its share of the Plasma Etching sector to nearly 43%. Another strong performance was demonstrated by Varian Semiconductor in the Ion Implant sector, growing nearly 60% over 2005. Nevertheless, 2007 will be a down year for the semiconductor equipment market, dropping nearly 4% from inflated 2006 revenues.