Corporate Environment Health & Safety
For more information, please contact Corporate Environment Health & Safety.
Managing hazardous materials
To produce semiconductor devices, NXP uses various chemicals and materials, both in wafer fabs, assembly and test and the final products sold. Some of these chemicals and materials are highly specific and vital to NXP’s process technologies and products. Compared to other industry sectors, the semiconductor industry uses more chemicals and materials, but typically in lower volume and in a highly controlled way. We have several programs in place that regulate our use of hazardous chemicals, and we comply with some of the toughest standards in the industry for protecting our customers, our employees and the environment.
NXP has the ambition to be ahead of new chemical legislation and customer requirements. NXP must at all times, comply with all relevant legislation in force. Chemical management is therefore one of the cornerstones of NXP’s sustainability program. There are two primary goals of our chemical management programs. First, we must control the risks posed by chemicals in NXP production processes, with respect to the safety and health of workers and to the environment (pollution, global warming, ozone depletion, etc.). Second, we must ensure that any products and their packaging supplied by NXP onto the market pose no or negligible risk, due to the presence of hazardous chemicals, to customers or to the environment.
Some fluorinated gases, such as hydrochlorofluorocarbons (HCFCs), are ozone-depleting substances, since these cause degradations of the ozone layer that protects the earth and its inhabitants against excessive UV radiation. In response to the Vienna Convention for the Protection of the Ozone Layer and the Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer, many countries have adopted regulations. Under these regulations, so-called “controlled substances” are to be phased out in the coming decade.
As of 2007, we phased out all use of ozone-depleting substances (ODS) in our manufacturing processes. Use of ODS for manufacturing is now prohibited in all our manufacturing sites. When an air-conditioning system that uses ODS refrigerants are scheduled for replacement, we replace it with a new system that doesn’t use ODS refrigerants. The great majority of ODS refrigerants have been replaced or are in the process of being replaced with non-ODS alternatives wherever possible and practical. In 2018, we continued to install new chillers at several sites to remove Class 2 ODS refrigerants such as CFC-22 and CFC-134.
For more information on our Ozone-Depleting Substances, please click this link.
We maintain centralized databases that register and classify more than 400 substances we use in roughly 2,500 process chemicals and preparations, along with more than 2,000 product-related materials and subparts used by our manufacturing operations. We update these databases frequently to be sure that they reflect the latest information. All NXP employees who deal with these items can access the databases to view helpful information, including material safety data sheets, workplace instructions cards, warning labels, baseline occupational health and environment information and instructions for exporting, transporting, handling and storing a given substance.
We aim to discontinue the use of these substances except those that are indispensable to the manufacture of our devices and don’t have a proven alternative. We are searching for alternatives as quickly as possible.
In many areas, we go beyond baseline laws and regulations to support voluntary agreements that promote industry-wide sustainability. NXP complies with the World Semiconductor Council’s (WSC’s) Voluntary Agreement for PFOS (PerFluoroOctyl Sulfonates). In early 2009, the Stockholm Convention COP4 lists PFOS in Annex B, which means it can still be used for a few critical applications, including semiconductor photolithography. In 2017, NXP eliminated all manufacturing use of PFOS, as have all companies participating in the WSC, leading to a WSC joint statement announcing the successful elimination of all remaining critical PFOS use in the semiconductor industry.
A proposal to eliminate the use of PFOA (PerFluoroOctanoic Acid) has been recommended for decision at the next Stockholm Convention COP. The proposal contains exemptions for a few critical applications, for 5 years after introduction in Annex A. NXP has eliminated all PFOA except for a few critical applications. We are working to eliminate all manufacturing use of PFOA by 2020.
Some substances of concern are emitted during production. These and other emissions are thoroughly monitored using programs in place to minimize our emissions overall.
For example, we have several emission-reducing measures already in place, covering such manufacturing items as scrubbers and washers (which use ammonia, fluorides, bromides, nitric acid, NOx and SOx), VOC burners, collection systems for liquid waste (which use fluorides, phosphates, sulfuric acid and solvents), a local treatment plant for fluoride, calcination, bio-filters and more.
Please click the link to view the substances of concern emissions to air and wastewater. The figures are based on measurements and calculations.
At NXP, our goal is to provide environmentally preferred products that meet both regulatory requirements and specific restrictions on hazardous substances. Our global Environmental Compliance Organization for Products (ECO-Products) manages our corporate product compliance procedures for:
We work closely with our supply chain to document our product compliance. Documentation includes full material composition declarations using IPC1752 or comparable templates. We also collect certificates of analysis for RoHS substances using an IEC 62321 recommended analytical technique.
NXP only qualifies new semiconductor packages with environmentally preferred materials in which the use of hazardous materials is kept to a technically necessary minimum.
For this purpose, we created our own ECO-Products Substance Control for Products and Packaging requirements.
It specifies substances that are not permitted at all or are not allowed at levels above established thresholds in our materials, parts, (semi-) finished goods, subassemblies and packaging materials. This ensures that no NXP products put on the market contain any substances that are restricted by regulations. While most substances on this list are not permitted by law, a number of them are not permitted by NXP in view of upcoming legislation, or their impact on the environment, health and safety, social impact and recycling possibilities.
The ECO-Products Substance Control for Products and Packaging specification also contains a number of substances that are allowed, but any intentional use of these substances above the declaration threshold must be reported as specified in the list. Most substances are placed on the list because of health risks in their use and/or processing. Others are placed on the list because they limit recycling, are scarce or have a high environmental impact in mining. In this way, NXP encourages suppliers to look for and start using alternatives.
To provide our stakeholders with more information about product content, as well as detailed information of Lead-Free and Halogen-Free products, we offer the Product Content Search Tool. NXP also provides information to IMDS (International Material Data System). In IMDS, all chemicals present in finished automotive manufacturing are collected, maintained, analyzed and archived. IMDS facilitates meeting the obligations placed by automotive manufacturers, and thus on their suppliers, by standards and regulations.
Formal guidelines have been introduced gradually over several years by various bodies substantiating NXP’s own drive to eliminate hazardous substances from our products. Directives such as RoHS (Restriction on Hazardous Substances in Electrical and Electronic Equipment), REACH (Registration, Evaluation and Authorization of CHemical substances), WEEE (Waste from Electrical and Electronic Equipment), and ELV (End of Life Vehicle) impose better control over waste management of electronic devices.
NXP declares that its semiconductor products (including homogeneous subcomponents) are designed to be RoHS compliant and meet the requirements defined under Directive 2011/65/EU of the European Parliament and of the Council of June 2, 2011 on the restriction of the use of certain hazardous substances in electrical and electronic equipment, including the latest amendment under Commission Delegated Directive (EU) 2019/172 of 16 November 2018, regarding exemption 15 for lead in solders.
NXP RoHS compliant semiconductor devices contain no more than 0.1% lead (Pb) by weight per homogeneous material, or else the devices may contain lead (Pb) for uses allowed by the RoHS Directive as amended.
The potential health hazard posed by lead (Pb) contamination is a major concern to everyone. In 2010, together with four other leading companies (BoschDivision Automotive Electronics, NXP Semiconductors, Infineon Technologies and STMicroelectronics), NXP formed a consortium, known as the DA5 (Die-Attach 5), to jointly investigate and standardize the acceptance of alternatives for high-lead solder for attaching die to semiconductor packages during manufacturing. For environmental reasons, the semiconductor industry is making every effort to eliminate high-lead solder wherever feasible. Any solution will require substitute material development and evaluation, internal semiconductor process and product qualification and semiconductor production conversion to guarantee product reliability. By jointly developing and qualifying an alternative, the DA5 consortium aims to identify and provide lead-free and environmentally friendly solutions as quickly as possible. The consortium also intends to understand the risks of current and future legislation and provide a common message to legislating bodies (for example, by supporting requests for exemption extensions).
NXP’s Pb-free initiative, which supports our commitment to sustainability, ensures the complete removal of lead from our entire device portfolio without adversely affecting technical specifications or our customer’s manufacturing processes. Recycling and careful disposal is one approach to address the health hazard of lead. But at NXP, we believe that prevention is better than a cure so we’ve made the manufacturing process Pb-free. We are actively engaged in researching new soldering materials, processes and package terminal plating, with the aim of making our broad product portfolio completely Pb-free in the near future. Some products, such as the majority of our DIP, SIL and QFN packages, have been Pb-free for many years.
Our goal is to maximize the number of products that are free of halogens (chlorine and bromine) and antimony. The shift to halogen-free does not change any product parameters or affect existing qualification, such as the automotive standards as defined by the AEC (Automotive Electronics Council). NXP customers benefit from this transfer to halogen-free, since environmental safety is becoming more important for manufacturing processes. Our threshold for these substances has been set at 900 ppm, which is better than the industry standard. Formal legislation restricting halogen and antimony oxide is now under discussion and NXP is providing technical expertise that will help legislators make informed decisions.
NXP’s halogen-free goal concerning IC packages aims to do multiple things:
These activities reflect NXP’s deep commitment to developing eco-friendly products and to integrate environmental safety aspects in all manufacturing processes. Halogen-Free products can be recognized by a logo on the box label.
We have procedures in place to ensure that we follow all the relevant local, regional and global laws that govern our business, including the regulations that require producers and importers of chemicals to register their substances along with the information needed to use them safely.
EU REACH (Registration, Evaluation and Authorization of CHemical substances), is the European legal framework for chemicals, in force since June 1, 2007. As of January 2019, the REACH Substance of Very High Concern (SVHC) list includes 197 candidates and 43 authorized substances. Substances found in the REACH Annex XIV, and in Annex XVII (with applicable restrictions) are on the prohibited or restricted substances list. Substances in the Candidate List (REACH SVHCs) may be categorized as Prohibited, Restricted or Declarable. NXP products and packaging do not contain substances found in Annex XIV and Annex XVII except where noted in the appendix of our EU REACH statement. In this appendix, NXP has identified materials within its products and packaging materials that may contain EU REACH SVHC candidate substances in excess of 0.1% by weight.
The European Union (EU) Directive regarding Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment (WEEE, Directive 2012/19/EU) requires “producers” of certain electrical and electronic equipment to develop recycling programs to allow the end user to return WEEE for recycling. The definition of “producer” is broad and can potentially include various entities in a products life cycle (e.g. manufacturer, distributor).
Each EU Member State has implemented national legislation detailing specific requirements for WEEE implementation in that Member State. Some other non-EU countries have laws similar to the WEEE Directive; however, the scope and producer responsibility requirements vary from those of the WEEE Directive.
NXP is primarily a component manufacturer. Therefore, NXP’s current products are generally not considered within the scope of the WEEE Directive until they are incorporated into a final product.
Some of our products contain brominated flame retardants in the plastic encapsulation. Plastics containing brominated flame retardants are considered a WEEE relevant substance. NXP semiconductor products that do not contain brominated flame retardants are easily identifiable by the Halogen-Free logo on the packaging label.
In determining the ELV status of its products, NXP relies upon its suppliers’ material content data certification for each homogeneous material in the product(s) that they or their subcontractors provide. Therefore, NXP declares that its semiconductor products are designed to be ELV-compliant and meet the requirements of the EU-Directive 2000/53/EC (End of Life Vehicles, ELV) and its amendments. NXP devices do not contain cadmium, mercury or hexavalent chromium above the allowable limits as defined in the End-of-Life Directive dated 18 September 2000.
NXP ELV-compliant semiconductor devices contain no more than 0.1% lead (Pb) by weight per homogeneous material, or else the devices may contain lead (Pb) for uses allowed by the ELV Directive. Any lead currently contained in these products meets the criteria for exemptions as found in Annex II of Commission Directive 2013/28/ EU dated 17 May 2013.
NXP also tracks and verifies compliance with other major legislation in the countries and regions in which we operate. Examples of these include China RoHS, California Prop 65, EU Parliament and Council Directive 94/62/EC covering Packaging and Packaging Waste, US Conflict Minerals and Ozone Depleting Substances in the Montreal Protocol.
For more information, please contact Corporate Environment Health & Safety.