Power Outage in Taiwan Affects Main iPhone Chipmaker TSMC Factory

The iPhone chip maker TSMC in Taiwan lost power on Thursday, which could have had a negative impact on their operations.

The southern half of the country, including the two largest cities, had widespread power outages.

Power Outage in Taiwan Affects Main iPhone Chipmaker TSMC Factory

Taiwan Experiences Electric Shock Due to Prolonged Power Outages

Taipei, the capital, and Kaoshiung, the island’s second-largest city, were also impacted by the outage (via Nikkei Asia). More than 5 million homes lost power, along with factories in industrial parks where TSMC is located.

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The southern power grid system has malfunctioned, Taiwan Power Co. said in a brief statement. Since then, much of southern Taiwan and other parts of the country have been in the dark.

The problem centred on Hsinta Power Plant, the largest power plant in Kaohsiung. According to Economic Minister Want Mei-Hua, the Hsinta Power Plant would be disconnected from Taiwan’s power system. Mei-Hua added, “It will take some time to get everything back up and running.”

Up to 75% of the 5.49 million affected homes in Taiwan had power restored by Thursday afternoon. According to Wang, the next time there is a power outage will be on Thursday night.

What Effect This Will Have On TSMC, Who Makes The iPhone’s Chips

When the lights went out at Tainan Science Park, where many of TSMC’s cutting-edge chip factories are located, the voltage in the area fluctuated erratically and unexpectedly. Two major electronics manufacturers, Foxconn subsidiary Innolux and United Microelectronics, have established local operations in the region.

As of Thursday morning, TSMC had yet to analyse the degree of the power disruptions’ impact on the company’s output. At the time, the products that were currently in production had not yet been announced by the firm.

TSMC makes chips for more than than Apple, so evaluating the impact on iPhone production is impossible. If the plant was finishing up a run for a different customer when the disruption occurred, it’s possible that chip supplies for the iPhone won’t be affected.

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Historical Power Issues

Electricity outages are commonplace in Taiwan, therefore people there are used to them. Its last major disruption, in 2021, impacted almost 4 million homes. Once again, this one may be traced back to problems at the Hsinta Power Plant.

There was a major outage in 2017 that impacted 6.68 million homes. Although the TSMC factory in Taiwan is huge and cutting-edge, the business operates a number of additional plants across the world. The corporation is also thinking about constructing a new plant in Arizona.