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Implications of the CHIPS Act for the Helium Industry

David Minchin, chairman of Helix Exploration, highlighted the indispensable role of helium in computer chip manufacturing. Helium is used to cool silicon wafers in vacuum chambers, which is critical for facilitating precise chemical reactions and preventing unwanted interactions due to its inert properties. This cooling capability is essential for the miniaturisation of circuitry, ensuring chips are both high-performing and reliable. Additionally, following the 2022 Chips and Science (CHIPS) Act aimed at strengthening American semiconductor supply chains, Minchin notes that Helix's Montana project is strategically positioned to meet the increasing demand for helium in the semiconductor industry.

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