Russian chip procurement list exposed, imports or will be difficult!

Electronic Fever Network reports (article / Lee Bend) As the war between Russia and Ukraine continues, the demand for weapons for the Russian army has surged. However, it seems that Russia is currently facing the problem of insufficient weapons. Ukrainian Prime Minister Denys Shmyhal (Denys Shmyhal) previously said, "The Russians have used up nearly half of their arsenal, and it is estimated that they have only enough parts left to produce four dozen ultra-high-sonic missiles."
Russia urgently needs to procure chips for weapons manufacturing
In such a situation, Russia is in urgent need of purchasing chips for weapons manufacturing. Recently, a list of defense products allegedly drawn up by the Russian Defense Ministry for procurement leaked out, with product types including semiconductors, transformers, connectors, transistors and other components, most of which are manufactured by companies in the United States, Germany, the Netherlands, the United Kingdom, Taiwan, China and Japan.
From the product list, there are hundreds of components, which are classified into 3 levels - extremely important, important and general. The vast majority of the 25 models on the "extremely important" list were made by U.S. chip giants Marvell, Intel (Altera), Holt (aerospace chips), Microchip, Micron, Broadcom and Texas Instruments.

There are also models from IDT (acquired by Renesas), Cypress (acquired by Infineon). There are also power modules including from Vicor (USA) and connectors from AirBorn (USA). There are also FPGAs from Intel (Altera) model 10M04DCF256I7G, and Marvell's 88E1322-AO-BAM2I000 Gigabit Ethernet transceiver.

In the "important" list, including ADI's AD620BRZ, AD7249BRZ, AD7414ARMZ-0, AD8056ARZ, LTC1871IMS-1# PBF and nearly 20 models. As well as Microchip's EEPROM, microcontrollers, power management chips, such as models AT25512N-SH-B, ATMEGA8-16AU, MIC49150YMM-TR and MIC39102YM-TR, respectively.

Russia's excessive dependence on Western imports of chips

Whether for military or civilian use, Russia relies on imports from the West for many chips and components. Reports in April of this year showed that the Russian military is equipped with more than 800 types of equipment, using many products and spare parts from the United States and Europe. According to official Russian media reports, all types of Russian weaponry, including the latest developments, are involved in the war with Ukraine.

According to RUSI's latest report, dismantling of Russian-made weapons captured on the Russian-Ukrainian battlefield revealed that 27 of these weapons and military systems, ranging from cruise missiles to air defense systems, rely heavily on Western components. RUSI statistics found that, according to the weapons recovered from Ukraine, about two-thirds of the components were manufactured by U.S. companies. Of these, products made by U.S. companies ADI and Texas Instruments accounted for nearly a quarter of all Western components in the weapons.

For example, on July 19, 2022, the Ukrainian military found Cypress chips in the on-board computer of the Russian 9M727 missile on the battlefield. One of Russia's most advanced weapons, the 9M727 missile can maneuver at low altitudes to evade radar and can strike targets hundreds of miles away, and contains 31 foreign components. There are also 31 foreign components for the Russian Kh-101 cruise missile, whose components are made by companies such as Intel Corporation and AMD's Xilinx.

With the list revealed, it will be more difficult for Russia to import chips.

Russia's military industry has been affected by various sanctions in 2014, 2020 and now when it comes to obtaining imported parts. But Russia has been sourcing chips from around the world through various channels. For example, it imports chips from other countries and regions, such as Europe and the United States, through distributors operating in Asia.

The U.S. government said in March that Russian customs records showed that in March 2021, a company imported $600,000 worth of electronics made by Texas Instruments through a Hong Kong distributor. Another source indicated that seven months later, the same company imported another $1.1 million worth of Xilinx products.

From the dismantling of Russian weapons recovered from the Ukrainian battlefield above, there are a number of Russian-made weapons with chips from the U.S. From the latest product procurement list drawn up by the Russian Ministry of Defense, there are a large number of chips produced by U.S. companies. It can be seen that in the past under the U.S. export control, Russia is still importing chips from the United States, Europe and other places through various channels for military use.

But the exposure of this Russian procurement list this time may cause the U.S. and European governments to tighten export controls and try to shut down Russia's secret procurement network. As a result, Russia's subsequent weapons manufacturing could be hampered.

Russia seeks independent research and development to get rid of foreign dependence

Whether in military or civilian chips, Russia is trying hard to get rid of its dependence on U.S. technology. However, independent research and development is not progressing well. On the military industry side, in a 2015 report to Putin, Deputy Defense Minister Yuri Borisov said that parts from NATO countries were used in 826 samples of domestic military equipment. Russia's goal is to have Russian parts replace 800 of those by 2025.

By 2016, however, only seven of those models had been assembled without imported parts. The Russian military industry has spent a lot of money without completing the implementation of import substitution. in 2019, Deputy Prime Minister Yuri Borisov estimated that the total debt owed to banks by defense companies is 2 trillion rubles, of which 700 billion rubles cannot be repaid by factories.

On the civilian side, Russia is also promoting domestic companies. Following the outbreak of the Russia-Ukraine conflict, Russia, which is under Western economic sanctions, was unable to procure relevant semiconductor products, and in response, the Russian government previously announced that it was spending 7 billion rubles to support Mikron, one of Russia's few civilian semiconductor companies, to boost the company's production capacity.

Mikron is currently the largest chip company in Russia, both foundry and design, and Mikron's website says it is the number one chip manufacturer in Russia. It is understood that Mikron is currently able to produce semiconductors with process technologies ranging from 0.18 microns to 90 nanometers, which are not advanced enough to produce traffic cards, the Internet of Things, and even some general-purpose processor chips.

As things stand, the Russia-Ukraine war may continue. Russia's weapons stockpile may face a shortage, with the Russian Ministry of Defense to draw up the chip procurement list exposed, Russia's subsequent procurement for weapons with chips, will likely encounter greater obstacles, and independent research and development is difficult to make progress for a while.

Post time: Dec-17-2022