Environmental Modeling: Understanding Risk and Enabling Compliance
(Intel Corporation, Hillsboro, Oregon)
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As with many high-tech businesses, the semiconductor industry has successfully operated for decades in a state of tension between obtaining greater computing power and the increased technical demands required to achieve this feat. For semiconductor technology to become more state-of-the-art, this technical innovation may include increased chemical volumes, new categories of chemicals being chosen for production and more complex chemical mixtures in use. When examined against the social push toward greater environmental accountability, as well as increasingly strict regulatory and permit limitations to semiconductor manufacturing facilities, an opportunity is clearly available for a company’s environmental engineers. They must fully support technology development while ensuring compliance and adherence to worldwide, federal and corporate environmental goals. To accomplish this difficult task, sophisticated chemical models must be developed and maintained to define current operational state and predict future risk. This presentation will discuss the need for chemical modeling, model structure and validation, model use, and how model summaries can help prioritize abatement or facility development projects required to meet strict environmental objectives. Examples will be shared to illustrate basic methods of model creation, validation and testing selections, and use of models to prove compliance. In addition, historical achievements, as well as current and future challenges in the industry will be discussed to show the value of models in addressing accountability, permit limits and in defining the risks for many emerging pollutants.