SK Hynix announced on October 2 that it was approved by the Japanese government to import hydrogen fluoride from Showa Denko late last month and transport the chemical compound. SK Hynix is said to be able to use it for at least two months. Earlier in August this year, the Japanese government granted the same export license to Samsung Electronics.
On the other hand, shipments of liquid hydrogen fluoride to South Korea are still banned by the Japanese government. On October 1, South Korea’s Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy said the Japanese government has never permitted exports of liquid hydrogen fluoride to be used in semiconductor manufacturing processes since its export curbs were introduced in July.
Under the conditions, SK Hynix announced that in some of its processes this month it started to use domestically procured liquid hydrogen fluoride. “To diversify supply sources, we have conducted reliability and suitability tests and the use of domestic procurement will be extended over time,” explained SK Hynix. LG Display and Samsung Electronics replaced high-purity imported hydrogen fluoride from Japan with the same chemical compound supplied in South Korea for comparison.